When people in the US think about Florida, they usually envision sunshine and fun. While tourism is the largest industry in Florida, agriculture is second. Here are some things you might not know about Florida Agriculture.
Florida Agriculture produces more oranges than anywhere else in the country. Everybody knows that! And while Florida produces 80% of citrus for the US, it is also the number one producer of squash, cucumbers, tomatoes, corn, watermelon, grapefruit, and sugarcane? Not bad!
What about livestock? Of the 10 largest beef ranches in the country, four of them are in Central Florida. One is owned by the Native American Seminole tribe. In addition, over 120,000 dairy cows live in Florida and are responsible for nearly 300,000 gallons of milk each year. Please pass the cereal.
Everybody loves peanut butter. Who knew that Florida was responsible for nearly 800,000,000 pounds of peanuts used for peanut butter every year?
Bzzzzz… That’s right. Florida agriculture has an enormous beekeeping industry. They send bees to 27 different states in the US to assist in pollinating local crops. Who knew?
Of course Florida has seafood. But did you know that Florida is a major supplier of the country’s oysters, grouper, mullet, pink shrimp, Spanish mackerel, pompano, lobsters, and mullet?
In the cold and barren winter months, where does most of the eastern part of the US get their fresh fruits and vegetables? That’s right. Florida.
Not all agriculture is food related. Don’t forget about horses. Florida is home to nearly 14,000 horse farms which house over 120,000 horses. The horse racing industry is response for thousands of jobs and millions of dollars of income.
If you go to the grocery store anytime soon, you’ll likely be purchasing something fresh from Florida. Make sure you check out the “Fresh from Florida” website for some delicious recipes including “Taco Stuffed Florida Bell Peppers” and “Florida Honey and Citrus Glazed Chicken”.