Ag Facts

Wisconsin Agriculture Facts:

Person holding cranberries in a cranberry field
Did you know that Wisconsin ranks first in the nation for cranberries?

Agriculture is essential to the success of Wisconsin. In our state, agriculture contributes $104.8 billion annually to the economy. Wisconsin is home to more than 64,900 farms which grow and raise a diverse array of food products ranging from berries to vegetables to milk and cheese. If you want to learn more about Wisconsin agriculture facts, you’ve come to the right place.

While Wisconsin might be known as America’s Dairyland, the state’s agricultural industry is very diverse. Here’s a fun fact about Wisconsin agriculture! Did you know that Wisconsin ranks first in the nation for cranberries, ginseng and dairy goats?

Americans spend
of their disposable income on food, the lowest in the world.

Do you know these other Wisconsin agricultural facts?

  • One farm produces enough food and fiber for 166 other people domestically and abroad.

  • One acre is about the size of a football field.

  • Americans spend just 10% of their disposable income on food, the lowest in the world.

  • The U.S. has the safest, most affordable food supply in the world

  • 97% of American farms are family owned

  • Farmers receive just 15.5 cents of every retail food dollar. Off farm costs (like marketing, packaging and transportation) account for 83 cents.

  • There are nearly 1,200 licensed cheesemakers in Wisconsin who make 26% of the nation’s cheese supply.

More Than Food:

Agriculture impacts us each and every day. From the tires on our cars to the paint brushes we use and beyond, farmers play an important role in our lives. Here are some non-food products that are made possible by farmers:

  • Clothing: Farmers in the southern part of the United States grow cotton that is used to make shirts, jeans, hats and more.

  • Houses: Logging is popular in the central and northern parts of Wisconsin. Loggers will grow trees specifically to be harvested for lumber that can be used to build homes and for other wood-working projects.

  • Sports: Baseballs, footballs, uniforms and even the tickets we buy use agricultural products such as leather, cotton string and wood pulp to make paper.

  • School supplies: Going to school is a lot more fun because of Wisconsin soybean farmers who make crayons possible. One acre (about the size of a football field) of soybeans can make more than 82,000 crayons.

Wisconsin Ag

Agriculture Across Wisconsin:

Interested in learning more about agriculture in your county? The University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension calculates the economic impact of agriculture in each county across Wisconsin. This is an excellent resource to dive deeper into what local farmers are growing and raising.

Want to invite a local farmer to your classroom to speak about agriculture? You can find contact information for local Ag in the Classroom Coordinators and the Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom coordinator on the contact page.