Another Letter: It's important to protect our prime cropland
It is very important to protect our most economically productive soils and farmland for the production of our food, fuel and feed for present and future generations. Of the 1.94 million acres of surface area in the contiguous United States (2002) about 50% was used to produce our food and other products. This farmland includes rangeland 20.9%, non-prime cropland 8.3%, prime cropland 10.7% (212.3 million acres) and other land 10.3%, compared to developed land 5.5% (107.3 million acres).
Two examples that demonstrate there is a wide range of our farmland production ability: Rangeland would need 5 to 200 acres to grow enough feed for one cow for one year. Ohio's prime cropland would only need one or less acres. Ohio's ten year (1995-2004) county corn yield average ranges from a high of 147 bu./acre to a low of 94 bu./acre, a difference of 53 bu./acre. The state's 10 year average was 132.6 bu./acre.
It is very important to not develop our most productive prime cropland. We don't have too much good farmland, in reality we want more highly productive land, not less.
For those interested in ways to protect Ohio's Prime farmland, please contact the FairfieldCounty SWCD about attending the Conservation Easements Forum on February 20, 2007.
P o l i c y D e v e l o p m e n t Chairman
Fa i r f i e ld County Fa rm Bureau