Poultry production gives big boost to farm incomes, study finds
By Meatingplace Editors on 3/18/2009
Poultry production is a key driver of rural economies, with counties that have plants generating average farm income that is almost three times that of non-poultry-producing counties, according to a new University of Georgia study.
Poultry counties also have double the net income per acre of non-poultry counties, the study of farm incomes in southern Georgia found.
Locating an integrated poultry production complex in a county requires an average initial investment of more than $180 million in hard assets, such as processing plants, feed mills, hatcheries and production houses, plus more than $50 million annually in payroll, labor and contract payments, according to the study.
A new poultry complex adds costs to the community such as additional demands on roads, utilities and schools, but these are usually more than offset by new tax revenue and spending, the study said.
Similar results likely would be found in other poultry-producing areas around the country, said study author Dan Cunningham, a professor of poultry science at the University of Georgia, in a news release issued by the Poultry Science Association.
Recent local zoning restrictions against poultry are hurting rural and state economies and lowering tax revenues, Cunningham said. Link
Often times the first thing you will hear from people against a modern livestock operation being built is that it will destroy the community in a variety of ways. However, this study, which examined areas with and without a viable poultry industry in Georgia, shows that these types of facilities improve the communities. They generate a lot of tax revenue through the jobs they create which allows these local governments to provide better services. Remember, when you destroy agriculture, grass will grow in our city streets. This is a good reminder.