CHARLESTON  — Agriculture sales dropped 7 percent in 2019, the USDA is reporting.

The 2019 cash receipts from farm marketing for all agricultural commodities in West Virginia fell to $639.2 million dollars, a decrease of 48.4 million dollars from 2018.

Receipts from marketing livestock and livestock products accounted for 75.1 percent of the State total. Cash receipts from crops accounted for 24.9 percent of the 2019 total.

The largest contributor to the agricultural marketing in the State continues to be poultry and eggs. Cash receipts from the poultry industry, which includes broilers, eggs, turkeys and farm chickens, accounted for 39.6 percent of the state total. The 2nd-leading contributor was cattle and calves, which accounted for 25.1 percent of the total in 2019.

But cattle sales were off more than 8 percent from 2018 and at a 5-year low in the state.

Numbers were also troubling for milk, broilers and eggs, all off from 2018 and near the bottom of the last 5 years. Turkey sales jumped from 2018, but still lagged 2017.

Hog sales slipped from 2018, but were still up 40 percent over previous years.

By comparison, crop sales were off less than 1 percent in 2019 from the year before.

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