Extension Ag Update
July/August 2001
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Ag Facts

  • As of January 1, 2001 there were 7,800 certified organic farmers in the U.S. This figure represents an 18% increase in the number of certified organic growers over the 1999 total of 6,600. Source: The Organic Farming Research Foundation

  • "The United States, with its 214 million motor vehicles, has paved 6.3 million kilometers (3.9 million miles) of roads, enough to circle the Earth at the equator 157 times. In addition to roads, cars require parking space. Imagine a parking lot for 214 million cars and trucks. If that is too difficult, try visualizing a parking lot for 1,000 cars and then imagine what 214,000 of these would look like. However we visualize it, the U.S. area devoted to roads and parking lots covers an estimated 16 million hectares (61,000 square miles), an expanse approaching the size of the 21 million hectares that U.S. farmers planted in wheat last year. But this paving of land in industrial countries is slowing as countries approach automobile saturation. In the United States, there are three vehicles for every four people. In Western Europe and Japan, there is typically one for every two people." Source: Paving the Planet: Cars and Crops Competing for Land by Lester Brown