The distributions of women-operated farms and farm sales differ widely among commodity specializations

A chart showing the distribution of women operated farms and their sales across commodity specializations in 2007.

According to the most recent Census of Agriculture, women-operated farms—farms where a woman was the principal operator—numbered 306,200 in 2007 (13.9 percent of all U.S. farms). Most women-operated farms (about 62 percent in 2007) specialized in grazing livestock or miscellaneous crops, but these are mostly small operations that contributed relatively little (16 percent) to the total sales of women-operated farms. A large majority of women-operated grazing livestock farms and ranches had less than $10,000 in annual sales, and 98 percent of miscellaneous crop farms had no sales in 2007. Most sales by women-operated farms (nearly 72 percent in 2007) came from farms specializing in poultry and eggs, specialty crops, grains and oilseeds, and dairy. While accounting for only about 20 percent of women-operated farms, average annual sales exceeded $130,000 for farms with these specializations. This chart is found in the May 2013 Amber Waves.

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