Number of U.S. Farms Falls Below Two Million

The USDA says the number of U.S. farms has fallen under two million for the first time since before the Civil War. The numbers come from the 2022 Census of Agriculture.

In 2022, there were 1,900,487 farms in the country, a seven percent decline from the level in the 2017 Census. A farm is defined as an establishment that produced or sold or would have sold in normal conditions, at least $1,000 in agricultural production in a year. The latest Census also reported that the total U.S. land in farms declined 2.2 percent to 880 million acres in 2022. This decline, when combined with the higher proportional decline in the number of farms, meant that the average farm size increased by five percent to 463 acres per farm.

The Census of Agriculture, conducted every five years by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, includes producer responses to questions about their farming operations.