Tourists may go to Georgia to pick the peaches, but the state’s agricultural production reaches far beyond those bountiful branches.
Georgia ranks first in the country in production of peanuts, pecans, rye, eggs and broilers. In fact, Georgia produces almost half of the peanuts produced in the United States each year—an operation that valued more than $400 million in 2009 alone, much larger than the peach crop sales in the same year, which totaled $60 million.
And in 2010, Georgia cotton farmers harvested 1.32 million acres—producing $1 billion worth of lint and seed that would go on to be used as food and feed, as well as fiber for clothing, home furnishings, and industrial use.
Agriculture serves as Georgia’s number one industry, contributing $67 billion to the state’s economy and providing more than 383,000 jobs.
One in seven Georgians work in agriculture, forestry, or a related sector—including our 39th president, Jimmy Carter (perhaps the world’s most famous peanut farmer).
In 2009, Georgia had $1.8 billion in total agricultural exports and ranked as the 18th highest agricultural exporter in the United States.
Its top five international exports were cotton, poultry, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans. Among these, Georgia ranked first in the nation for both peanuts and poultry, generating $158 and $533 million, respectively.
Yes, the people of Georgia may have a peachy sweet reputation, but with 10.1 billion acres of farmland, and $67 billion in value annually, there is no doubt that Georgia is an economic force to be reckoned with.
Read more about America’s agricultural production here!