Business & Real Estate

Sacramento County agriculture values reach record high

Sacramento County agriculture was worth more than $507 million last year, the highest total in recorded history, according to the 2016 Crop & Livestock Report released last week.

A bumper crop coupled with high market prices and increased vine planting caused wine grape values to rise 44 percent from 2015 totals. Sacramento County’s largest commodity helped the region’s agricultural production increase $37 million, or 7.9 percent, over the previous year.

Drought relief in Northern California helped crop yields rebound after years of drought. But as historic downpours continued into the beginning of this year, chief deputy agricultural commissioner Chris Flores said winegrowers have run the risk of soaking their grapes.

“It’ll be interesting to see what the 2017 numbers are because we had a lot of grapes underwater this year,” Flores said. “But unless we get some sort of devastating disease or pest, I see the theme continuing as kind of a steady climb.”

Sacramento County crop values have risen 26.5 percent since 2010, according to the annual report. Grapes, milk, pears and poultry are the county’s most valuable products.

Field crops such as rice, wheat and sorghum all declined in value over the previous year. Nursery stocks increased by 27 percent thanks to slightly higher prices and more widespread production.