Economic Contributions of Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Food Industries in Florida in 2014

Fresh from Florida hot air balloon against a blue sky

Agriculture, natural resources, and food industries remain a significant force in the economy of Florida, and informed public policy demands recognition of the economic contributions of these industries. Economists at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) evaluated the economic contributions of the agriculture, natural resources, and food industries for calendar year 2014 to update previous reports and provide current information on economic trends.

Direct employment in agriculture, natural resources, and food industries in Florida grew from 1.252 million jobs in 2001 to a peak of 1.351 million jobs in 2008, before declining during the Great Recession of 2009/10, and then recovering to 1.565 million jobs in 2014, which was 24.9 percent higher than 2001, representing an average annual growth rate of 1.9 percent. Overall growth in industry contributions during this period reflected an increase in exports of Florida products to domestic and world markets.

This 5-page executive summary was written by Alan W. Hodges and Mohammad Rahmani and published by the Food and Resource Economics Department.