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The Importance of Agriculture to The Economy of California’s Central Coast

May 4th, 2022

Farming and ranching on the Central Coast of California have historically been vocations of passion, connection to the land, and providing for the people who live there. Over time, activities have expanded, products have diversified, new opportunities have blossomed - and the rest of the state and country have taken notice.

The importance of agriculture to the economy of the Central Coast is significant for farmers, ranchers and consumers alike. In this piece, we’ll cover:

  • Why is agriculture important to the Central Coast economy?
  • What agriculture is produced on the Central Coast of California?
  • Central Coast agricultural opportunities
  • California agricultural economy statistics
  • Central Coast agricultural lending

If you are considering a career in agriculture or getting financed for a new farming project on the Central Coast, we hope you find this information helpful and inspiring.

Why is Agriculture Important to the Central Coast Economy?

California’s Central Coast has a rich history of agricultural innovation that has created a continuously prosperous economy. As early as the 1880’s, there was a shift in focus from gold mining and frontier property development to the advent of bonanza farms that rivaled the production in the U.S. Midwest.

These farms were heavy in wheat and other grain, but soon the California farmers developed novel biological systems that allowed diversification into year-round production of fruits and vegetables that were scarce elsewhere. This catalyzed a full-scale agricultural revolution in Central California which is still creating prosperity today.

With an expansion into livestock, viticulture, and agricultural technology, the Central Coast has become an integral component of California’s massive and unique economy. Agriculture accounts for nearly 3% of California’s GDP, and the Central Coast contributes heavily to that sum.

What Agriculture is Produced on the Central Coast?

The Central Coast of California has a Mediterranean climate that is warm and dry in the summer and cooler in the winter. In addition to this friendly agriculture weather, there are also significant sprawls of land dedicated strictly to agricultural production. This allows for the growth of:

  • Broccoli
  • Tomatoes
  • Citrus Trees
  • Wine Grapes
  • Table Grapes
  • Nuts
  • Cotton
  • Cereal Grains
  • Cattle
  • Rice
  • Row Crops

These are just some of the dozens of crops that help create a strong agricultural economy within the Central Coast. The ability to supply California, the rest of the United States, and even the world with produce from the Central Coast is a great boon to the region and its agricultural entrepreneurs.

Central Coast Agricultural Opportunities

In addition to production farms and growing the crops that help the Central Coast thrive, there are also jobs available such as:

  • Extraction Tech
  • Crop Production Supervisor
  • Laboratory Coordinator
  • Crop Production Specialist
  • Logistics and Transportation Coordinator

These careers in agriculture are all available in areas of growth, and can be great stepping stones for potential agricultural entrepreneurs. Regardless of how the aspiring farmers of the Central Coast get their start, it is clear that they make a continuous impact on the larger economy.

California Agricultural Economy Statistics

As the Central Coast of California feeds into the larger economy of the state itself, we can take a look at statistics to understand just how important agriculture is to California. These numbers also showcase the massive impact that California has on the United States and how dominant the Golden State can be as an individual enterprise:

  • California grows the majority of over 400 commodity crops in the United States.
  • California’s creates nearly 13% of all agricultural production in the United States.
  • In 2021, California generated nearly $50 Billion in cash receipts from agriculture.
  • California is the 5th largest supplier of food and wearable textiles in the world.
  • California produces nearly double the agricultural revenue of the 2nd highest state (Iowa).
  • Land value of California farm real estate has risen by nearly 38% in the last 5 years.
  • California creates 62% of the national value of fruit and nut crops in the United States.

Just like the vast state itself, the prosperity and diversity of California’s agricultural system is on full display up and down the coast. The Central Coast itself is particularly bountiful, and there are increasing amounts of resources available for potential entrepreneurs to start a farming business.

Central Coast Agricultural Lending

For California farmers to continue growing their crops and the agricultural economy, it takes an equally strong financial ecosystem to help aspiring entrepreneurs.

Seeing the historical strong returns from farms, agricultural financing is rising in its availability, and industry leaders in agricultural lending often use three types of agricultural loans:

  • Farmer Mac Loans
  • Farm Service Agency Loans
  • Agricultural Home Loans

These dynamic lending options allow different levels of agribusiness financing for entrepreneurs of all types. Getting proper lending for a farm in California is best done by working with local bankers who understand the financial landscape and obstacles that must be overcome for long-term success.

Community West Bank Can Provide Farm Loans Today

At Community West Bank, we enjoy seeing our local Central Coast farmers succeed. Nothing makes us happier than helping an aspiring agricultural entrepreneur get the proper funding to grow a new or existing business. It’s why our team has spent decades being one of the most reliable lenders in California.

If you’re looking to bank with a team that truly cares, please reach out to us today. For information about available funding for land acquisitions, refinancing, or other lending options for agricultural projects, please contact us to get started.

agriculture and the California economy

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