Washington State Agriculture

April 1st, 2022 by admin Leave a reply »

Washington State is one of the most productive growing regions in the world and enables farmers to produce some 300 crops each year. At the heart of this state are rich soils, diverse yet mild climates, and plenty of rain makes Washington an ideal for agriculture. For these reasons Washington is known as the Evergreen State. The state’s deep-water ports and its proximity to important Asian markets also provide natural advantages for agricultural trade.

Washington’s 39,500 farms power a diverse agricultural economy led by the state’s apple industry claiming 60 percent of the total U.S. apple production. In addition to the top 10 commodities (Apples, Milk, Wheat, Potatoes, Cattle, Hay, Cherries, Nursery/Greenhouses, Grapes, Pears) the Evergreen State is a major producer of stone fruits, farm forest products, fish, shellfish, onions and mint oils.

Although Washington ranks 14th among the states in total agricultural, it provides a broad range of agricultural products not provided by other states. About 70% of Washington’s total agricultural receipts are in crops; about 30% are in livestock products.

The State of Washington generates more apple revenues than any other state. Washington is the #1 apple-producing state. About 20% of the state’s total agricultural receipts are generated by apples. Washington produces about 64% of the nation’s apples. Wheat (fifth among the states) and potatoes (second among the states) are other major crops grown in Washington. Greenhouse and nursery products account for about 7% of Washington’s total agricultural receipts. Hay, behind wheat, is the second most valuable field crop grown in the state. Other important crops grown in Washington are hops (first among the states), sweet corn, mint (first among the states), corn for grain, barley and Kentucky bluegrass (first among the states).

Important vegetables for the state are onions, asparagus (first among the states), carrots, dry peas and lentils. Beyond apples, cherries, grapes, pears, and raspberries are the leading fruits grown in Washington.

Dairy products, particularly milk, comprise Washington’s most valuable group of livestock products and accounts for about 15% of the state’s total agricultural receipts. Beef cattle and calves generate about 9% of the state’s agricultural revenue. Aquaculture, chicken eggs, and broilers (young chickens) are other major livestock products thriving in Washington.

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