Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler sits down each week with Southern Farm Network’s Rhonda Garrison to discuss “Today’s Topic.”
Today is National Agriculture Day, a time to recognize the contributions that agriculture makes to our lives. Agriculture provides the food we eat, the clothes we wear and a lot of the products we use every day. Those are good reasons to celebrate.
Agriculture also provides a lot of economic benefits. It’s a $76 billion industry in North Carolina, employing 663,000 people. There are just under 50,000 farms in the state, and 8.4 million acres of farmland. There are also 18 million acres of forest in the state.
In 2014, cash receipts from farming totaled more than $13 billion. Livestock, dairy and poultry accounted for 67 percent of that total, and crops accounted for 33 percent.
North Carolina leads the nation in the production of sweet potatoes and tobacco, and is second in hog production, Christmas tree cash receipts and the number of trout sold. The state also ranks in the top five nationally in the production of turkeys, strawberries, cotton and broiler chickens, and the number of catfish sold.
The Commissioner says he enjoys sharing this information with people at meetings and events around the state, especially young people at schools. “My hope is there are future farmers in these schools,” he says.
Click on the audio player below to hear Commissioner Troxler and Rhonda discuss National Agriculture Day.
[Audio:/wp-content/uploads/Troxler_3-15-16.mp3|titles=Today’s Topic for March 15]
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