2022 Annual Crop Statistics Released
Author: Martin Settevendemie, County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer
8/22/2023 10:24:43 AM
The County of San Luis Obispo Department of Agriculture/Weights and Measures announces the release of the 2022 production statistics for the local agricultural industry.
For the second consecutive year, crop values for San Luis Obispo County set a record high as the total value for 2022 reached $1,084,332,000, a slight increase of less than one percent over the previous year.
For the second consecutive year, crop values for San Luis Obispo County set a record high as the total value for 2022 reached $1,084,332,000, a slight increase of less than one percent over the previous year. Although the impacts from the ongoing drought led to reduced yields in a wide variety of crops, strong crop prices helped offset reductions in total production, and the overall farmgate value of the county’s agricultural industry exceeded $1 billion for the third time in history.
For the fourth consecutive year, strawberries remain the county’s top valued crop and wine grapes stay in the second spot, as those two crops continue to account for nearly half of the county’s overall crop value. The importance of strawberries and wine grapes in the local agricultural landscape is undisputed, but the county continues to support a wide diversity of crops. In 2022, the biggest gains in value were reported in the vegetable sector, as the total value recorded for vegetables increased over $60 million from the previous year.
These figures represent only commodity gross values and do not reflect net profits received by local agricultural producers. Also, reported values do not include multipliers related to secondary economic benefits.
The top ten commodities by value in 2022 were:
- Wine Grapes
- Cattle and Calves
- Head Lettuce
- Vegetable and Ornamental Transplants
- Brussels Sprouts
- Cut Flowers
The fruit and nut sector was the only sector to fall in value on the year. Strawberries, while remaining the top valued crop in the county, fell 13% to $277,883,000. Wine grapes, at the number two spot, dropped 7% to $261,937,000. Avocado values, hard hit by drought and other unfavorable growing conditions, fell to $33,597,000 or 42% below 2021.
Vegetable production continues to be a major contributor to San Luis Obispo County agriculture with a value of $293,656,000 which is 25.7% above 2021. The nursery industry also saw a substantial value increase as growers maximized greenhouse capacity to produce $98,041,000 in various nursery products.
Field crops, despite a reduction in harvested acres, saw a 35% increase due to substantially higher prices for alfalfa and grain hay. The animal industry also fared well in 2022. Cattle prices were up 16.5% making up for animals having to be sold at lighter weights due to the ongoing drought and high costs of supplemental feed. The animal sector as a whole increased by 12% to $48,247,000.
Read the digital version of the 2022 Annual Crop Report. Historical Annual Reports from 1928 through 2021 can be viewed in the Crop Report Library.