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Publication #FE750

Executive Summary—A Cornerstone of Alachua County's Economy and Land Base: The Economic Impact of Agriculture and Natural Resources (2006)1

Rodney L. Clouser and Mohammad Rahmani2

The following is the executive summary of a more detailed report entitled A Cornerstone of Alachua County's Economy and Land Base: The Economic Impact of Agriculture and Natural Resources, available only in pdf format. To access the complete report, please click here or go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/FE/FE75000.pdf.

This report provides a profile of agricultural and natural resource industries in Alachua County based on data from the IMPLAN Pro database for Florida counties in 2006. These data are supplemented from the 2002 Census of Agriculture and Alachua County Property Appraisers Office. The IMPLAN software package and associated databases allow the estimation of multipliers to capture the total economic impact of agricultural and natural resource industries within the local economy.

For each reported measure (total ouptut impacts, total value-added impacts, and total exports), the figures reported include the direct output of the agricultural sector in question, the impacts associated with indirect inter-industry purchases of inputs by agriculture and its supplying industries, and the induced impacts of spending by employees and owners of agricultural and supplying industries. More information on IMPLAN can be obtained from the online publication Using IMPLAN to Assess Local Economic Impacts at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fe168.

Impacts are reported for the following agriculture and natural resource industry groups: agricultural inputs and services, environmental horticulture, forestry, fruit and vegetables, grain and oilseed, livestock and dairy, mining, food product manufacturing, sugarcane and tobacco farming, and wildlife. All impacts are reported in 2006 U.S. dollars.

The agriculture and natural resource based industry group is a large and diverse component of the Alachua County economy. The total output impacts for agriculture and natural resource industries in Alachua County were estimated at $592 million. The forestry and related wood and paper products industry was the largest sector, contributing more than $132 million in total output impacts, and accounts for more than 22 percent of total output impact in the county from agriculture and natural resource industries. The food product manufacturing industry with $116 million in output impacts registered as the second highest agriculture and natural resource industry in the county. The environmental horticulture industry (nursery and greenhouse, and landscape services), with over $86 million in output impacts and the fruit and vegetable farming and processing industry with $80 million output impacts, was another key contributor to the agriculture and natural resource sector. The livestock, dairy farming, and animal products industry registered a total of $54 million in output impacts in 2006.

This economic activity is generated from less than one percent of the county's population. The industry accounts for at least 55 percent of the land ownership and use (over 340,000 acres) in Alachua County. Property taxes from this land generates between $1.95 and $2.3 million in tax revenue each year. Additionally, the land use generates other benefits such as water recharge, wildlife habitat, open space, locally grown food products, and scenic beauty. The agriculture and natural resource sector also generates over six percent of the export value of all Alachua County economic sectors. The implication of this export activity is that Alachua County agriculture and natural resource industries not only serve local markets, but regional and national markets as well. Without the contributions of the agriculture and natural resource sectors in Alachua County, a “major hole” would need to be filled in the county's economy and land use.

Footnotes

1.

This document is FE750, one of a series of the Food and Resource Economics Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date September 2008. Reviewed March 2015. Visit the EDIS website at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.

2.

Rodney L. Clouser, professor and Extension public policy specialist; and Mohammad Rahmani, coordinator of economic analysis, Food and Resource Economics Department, UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.


The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations. For more information on obtaining other UF/IFAS Extension publications, contact your county's UF/IFAS Extension office.

U.S. Department of Agriculture, UF/IFAS Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A & M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension.