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Numbers show farming viable to county

Monies generated by Lawrence County’s farming community have raised a few eyebrows, the Lawrence County Farm Bureau announced this week.

Wednesday, November 29, 2000

Monies generated by Lawrence County’s farming community have raised a few eyebrows, the Lawrence County Farm Bureau announced this week.

Information for 1998 – the latest data available – show average receipts were $9,283 per farm, or $84 per acre, the Farm Bureau reported.

Countywide cash receipts totaled $5.29 million, which includes cash receipts from livestock, livestock products and crops, according to the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center in Wooster and the Ohio Agriculture Statistics Service in Columbus.

Of that total, $2.49 million was received from livestock and/or livestock products, while $2.8 million were received for all crops grown in the county.

Of course, the farmer doesn’t get that much, that’s one of the downsides, but it’s proof that agriculture plays a vital role in the county’s economy, said Matt Capper, local Farm Bureau president.

"Some people are saying agriculture is in the past in Lawrence County, but it’s not," Capper said.

The statistics show agriculture is actually making its mark, he said.

"It is contributing not only to our food source within the county but to the economy as well," he added. "At this time of Thanksgiving, we all need to thank our farmers for their contribution."

Some farmers might be getting out of tobacco or other productions, trying to diversify, but farming will continue, Capper said.

The numbers also could be used to boost farming’s image, he said.

With assistance from government programs and awareness of the economic benefits of local farming, more buyers might be attracted to local products, Capper added.

More publicity could mean more shippers coming to the county or more markets opening up, he said.

"If it’s doing this much business, and if it was helped along, it could prove to be even more."