Ag Week: 29.5 billion reasons to celebrate the industry |

Ag Week: 29.5 billion reasons to celebrate the industry

Ag Week will be marked around our readership area by Meat In Day events as well as other events to recognize the industry.

Paxton Pravecek fed bottle calves to 600 pounds during the pandemic, marketing them at a local salebarn. File photo

In Colorado, 39,000 farm operations steward 31,800,000 acres. In Nebraska, 44,800 farm operations steward 44,800,000 acres, and in Wyoming, 12,200 farm operations steward 29,000,000 acres, all according to the USDA.

Laurynn Vetter, Yuma, Colo., was able to show her heifers after getting her start in the dairy industry from Yuma Dairy. File photo
Steve Sigestad won a photo contest for 2021 Soil Health Conference attendees with this shot of corn planted on 60-inch rows and broadcast seeded with an eight-species cover crop mix. File photo

In Colorado, cattle contribute about $4 billion annually, along with sheep and dairy cattle. Over $2 billion of hay and haylage are produced annually, 1.3 million acres of corn are harvested for grain and silage, nearly $500,000,000 in wheat hits the scale, and potatoes, sorghum, millet, barley, sunflowers, peaches, and sugar beets round out the commodities grown in the state that add to the annual agriculture cash receipts.

Jason Santomaso calls bids, flanked by Jim Santomaso and John Korrey. Photo by Rachel Gabel

In Nebraska, cattle are king with an inventory of 1.8 million beef cows, and 2.8 million head of cattle on feed. About 9.9 million acres of corn are grown with another 5.6 million acres of soybeans and 90,000 acres of hay. Wheat, sorghum, potatoes, millet, sunflowers, peas (dry edible), oats, sugar beets, and haylage round out the commodities that are grown and harvested, keeping rural communities thriving.

Wheat harvest has begun in Colorado and is a mixed bag with moisture levels ranging. Photo by Rachel Gabel

Wyoming boasts nearly 1.3 million cattle and another 330,000 sheep in the state. Wyoming’s hay fields yield about 2 tons per acre with an additional 95,000 acres of corn grown. Barley, wheat, and sugar beets round out the commodities in the Cowboy State.

Anthony and Dani Theos’ sons are sixth generation sheep producers on the family’s ranch in western Colorado. Photo by Dani Theos

All told, given the total value of agriculture commodities produced within The Fence Post Magazine’s readership area, there are at least 29.5 billion reasons to celebrate and appreciate the industry that feeds, fuels, and clothes the world.


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