USDA February Ag Report

Snippets from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's monthly ag report for February.

Number of farms, and land in farms

  • UNITED STATES: The number of farms in the United States in 2012 is estimated at 2.2 million, down 11,630 farms from 2011. Total land in farms, at 914 million acres, decreased 3 million acres from 2011. The average farm size is 421 acres, up 1 acre from the previous year.

Milk production

  • NEW MEXICO: Milk production in New Mexico during January totaled 688 million pounds, up slightly from January 2012. Production per cow averaged 2,150 pounds for January, 105 pounds above January 2012. The number of milk cows on farms was 320,000 head, 15,000 head less than January 2012.
  • UNITED STATES: Milk production in the 23 major States during January totaled 15.9 billion pounds, up 0.6 percent from January 2012. December revised production at 15.7 billion pounds, was up 1.7 percent from December 2011. The December revision represented an decrease of 5 million pounds or less than 0.1 percent from last month's preliminary production estimate. Production per cow in the 23 major states averaged 1,871 pounds for January, 11 pounds above January 2012. The number of milk cows on farms in the 23 major states was 8.50 million head, 2,000 head less than January 2012, but 6,000 head more than December 2012.

Cattle inventory

  • NEW MEXICO: All cattle and calves in New Mexico as of January 1, 2013, totaled 1,340,000 head, 50,000 head below 12 months earlier. Beef cows at 390,000, were 45,000 head below January 1, 2012. Milk cows totaled 320,000, down 15,000 head from a year ago. Beef replacement heifers totaled 75,000, while milk replacement heifers totaled 125,000 head.
  • UNITED STATES: All cattle and calves in the United States as of January 1, 2013 totaled 89.3 million head, 2 per-cent below the 90.8 million on January 1, 2012. This is the lowest January 1 inventory of all cattle and calves since the 88.1 million on hand in 1952.

Chile peppers

  • NEW MEXICO: Chile peppers planted for all purposes for 2012 was 9,900 acres, an decrease of 100 acres from the previous year's total of 10,000 acres. Acres harvested for all purposes was 9,600. To-tal state production was 1,556,000 hundredweight. Price increased from $33.90 in 2011 to $42.00 in 2012 resulting in an overall value of $65.4 million dollars.


  • NEW MEXICO: Planted onion acreage for 2012 was 5,500 acres an decrease of 600 acres from the previous year's planted acreage. Harvested acreage was 5,400 acres which was down 500 from 2011. Yield for the 2012 crop was 530 cwt/acre bringing total production to 2,862,000 cwt.

Agriculture prices received

  • NEW MEXICO: Alfalfa hay prices for January averaged $239.00 per ton up $3.00 from December 2012. All hay price was $232.00 per ton, up $3.00 from a month earlier. Milk prices declined from $20.00 per hundredweight to $19.20 per hundredweight.

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