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Women’s Impact in Agriculture

Each March 8, International Women’s Day is celebrated worldwide. From the classroom, to the farm, to the boardroom, women are helping pave the way for a better agricultural future. As an example, I would like to share some positive numbers highlighting the great value of women in Agriculture according to the latest US Census.

Women in Charge

Women in Agriculture represent 30% of American farmers (n=969,672).

Of total female farmers: 288,264 were principal operators, that is, the person in charge of the farm’s day-to-day operations. (USDA, 2012)

Fig. 1. Presence of Women in Agriculture by numbers and percentages

Age and Internet Access, Not a Problem

Women principal operators tend to be older than principal operators overall.

Only 4% of women principal operators were under 35 years old in 2012, compared to 6% of all principal operators. The average age of women principal operators was 60.1 years, nearly two years more than the overall average.

Women principal operators increased their Internet access in 2012, and now match the access rate of all principal operators.

Women operators are less likely to report farming as their primary occupation, as well as, to work off the farm. (USDA, 2012)

Fig.2. Age of Women in Agriculture.

Happy International Women’s Day!

Content modified from 2012 Census of Agriculture by USDA. Source: Women _Farmers

Women in Ag in Florida

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