Acres of Farmland Used to Harvest Produce for Direct Human Consumption
This indicator tracks the total number of farmland acres in the region that support food for direct human consumption. The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines “direct consumption” as the totals found in these categories: orchards, peanuts, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and vegetables. This data excludes community gardens and other entities not counted in the Census of Agriculture.
The goal for this indicator is for the acreage of farmland used to harvest produce for direct human consumption to increase at the same rate targeted by the GO TO 2040 Plan Update: a 75 percent increase by 2040. Because ON TO 2050’s policy goals for this topic are unchanged and no new data is available for this indicator, the new targets reflect the same annual rate of increase as those in the GO TO 2040 Plan Update.
The chart below shows a decline in the number of acres in the region used to harvest produce for direct human consumption over the last four censuses; achieving the 2050 goal will increase the number of acres used for this purpose to a level comparable to that seen in the year 2002 by 2040. The 2025 goals reflect a straight-line increase from current conditions, while the 2050 goal reflects a slightly higher, rounder target than a straight-line increase.
2025: 6,240 acres or more of farmland used to harvest produce for direct human consumption
2050: 10,000 acres or more of farmland used to harvest produce for direct human consumption