U.S. survey: N.H. organic sales totaled $16.8m in 2011

New Hampshire accounted for 14 percent of all the organic food sales in New England in 2011, eclipsing Massachusetts but barely a quarter of the organic sales recorded in Vermont.

USDA-certified organic growers in New Hampshire sold $16.8 million worth of organic agricultural commodities in 2011, according to the results of the 2011 Certified Organic Production Survey, released earlier this month by USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.

The survey included responses from all known farm operators that produce certified organic crops and/or livestock. In New Hampshire, there are 80 USDA-certified organic farms, it said.

The New Hampshire sales accounted for 14 percent of all the organic sales in New England in 2011, which totaled $119.3 million for the year. Of that New England total, sales of organic livestock and poultry products (including milk) accounted for $70 million, while organic crops accounted for another $40 million.

Vermont was the undisputed regional leader in organic sales in 2011, with $65.8 million in sales. Maine came in second, with $24.4 million, and New Hampshire third. Trailing the Granite State was Massachusetts, with $10.8 million in organic sales, followed by Connecticut at $1.2 million and Rhode Island in the rear with $307,000 in organic sales.

The numbers also showed that New Englanders embrace organic food at a higher rate than the country as a whole.

In New England, sales of organic commodities accounted for more than 4 percent of all agricultural receipts, while nationally, sales of certified organic commodities make up less than 1 percent of total receipts, said Gary Keough, director of the NASS New England field office.

In New Hampshire, $1.2 million of the state's total organic output came from the sale of organic vegetables. The survey also found that in 2011, eight certified organic farms in the state produced more than 29,000 gallons of organic maple syrup, with gross sales of $1.03 million.


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