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published on September 18, 2018 - 2:12 PM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

Tulare County has once again emerged as the top ag county — at least in the Central Valley.

Last year, Tulare County crops were worth $7.03 billion, up 10.5 percent compared to 2016. That figure just barely edges out Fresno County, where ag sales totaled $7.02 billion last year, up 13.5 percent from 2016.

All four Central Valley counties saw year-over increases — Madera County up 8.4 percent to $1.97 billion and Kings County up 1.4 percent to $2.06 billion.

Tulare County was previously California and the nation’s top ag county for three years running before it was edged out in 2016 by Kern County, which reported $7.18 billion in ag receipts that year, compared to $6.37 billion for Tulare County in 2016.

Tulare no longer top ag county in the nation

For 2017, Kern County reported sales of $7.25 billion, a 1-percent increase from 2016.

Milk continues to be the top farm commodity in Tulare County, with gross value of $1.77 billion, up 8 percent from 2016.

Production of field crops — alfalfa, hay, corn, etc. — totaled $479.76 million, down 7.8 percent from 2016, mostly attributed to reduced acreage. Fruit and nut commodities were valued at $3.88 billion, up 18.1 percent.

After milk, rounding out the top 5 agricultural commodities in Tulare County for 2017 were grapes at No. 2 ($904.75 million), navel and Valencia oranges at No. 3 ($770.95 million), cattle and calves at No. 4 ($637.05 million) and fresh tangerines at $462.84 million.

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