The agricultural championship has returned to Fresno County.
For the first time since 2013, Fresno County leads the nation in agricultural production.
Producing nearly $7.9 billion worth of agriculture in 2018, Fresno County edged out Kern County ($7.47 billion) for the coveted crown.
“According to the California Department of Food and Agriculture, ‘Over a third of the country’s vegetables and two-thirds of the country’s fruits and nuts are grown in California.’ ” Fresno County Farm Bureau CEO Ryan Jacobsen said in a statement. “Fresno County lies in the heart of this production and proudly serves as the food capital of the nation.”
Tulare County rated third at $7.21 billion in agricultural production.
Farmers and ranchers in Fresno County produced a record value of $7.88 billion in crops and commodities last year, up from $7.02 billion in 2017.
Almond production led the charge, producing a value of $1.18 billion.
Grapes were Fresno County’s second most valuable commodity at $1.11 billion, followed by pistachios ($862 million), poultry ($596 million) and garlic ($435 million).
Melissa Cregan, the Fresno County agricultural commission, said the county’s strength stems from the diversity in crop production. The county had more than 300 different crops in 2018, of which 76 grossed at least $1 million.
“Although individual commodities may experience difficulties from year-to-year,” Cregan wrote in her letter to the Fresno County Board of Supervisors, “Fresno County continues to supply the highest quality of food and fiber nationwide and abroad to more than 95 countries around the world.”