In 2011, the state's 10,300 farms generated cash receipts totaling $1.1 billion. The nursery/greenhouse/sod industry remained the leading commodity group with cash receipts of $451.1 million. Cash receipts for fruits and vegetables totaled $381.6 million, followed by field crops with $84 million. Equine brought in $59 million, while the sale of poultry and eggs generated $25 million. Dairy industry sales were valued at $23.2 million.
Retaining productive, taxpaying farmland is critically important to all New Jersey residents since agriculture is the largest single source of the scenic vistas we all enjoy throughout the year. Productive farmland covers 730,000 acres.
Farmers in the Garden State produce more than 100 different kinds of fruits and vegetables for consumers to enjoy either fresh or processed here in New Jersey and elsewhere in the Northeast, in Canada and in many countries around the world. Nationally, New Jersey is one of the top 10 producers of blueberries, cranberries, peaches, tomatoes, bell peppers, cucumbers, snap beans, spinach, and squash.
In addition, growers also produced hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of specialty crops that added a unique flavor to the Garden State’s bounty. Vineyards, for example, are a growing segment of the industry, enabling the state’s 46 vintners to develop a wide variety of award-winning New Jersey wines.
Fish and seafood are also a valuable commodity with tons of bluefish, tilefish, flounder, hake, shellfish and other species harvested annually. With its catch sold here at home and in foreign markets around the world, the commercial fishing industry adds another $178 million to the value of agriculture in New Jersey.