County will take questions about ag district during April 15 session at Hoag Library

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 18 March 2024 at 10:04 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: A farmer plants seeds in May 2019 in Carlton on Waterport-Carlton Road. That sunny day gave farmers a chance to get their big equipment out in the fields during a soggy spring that year.

ALBION – The Orleans County Department of Planning and Development will have a session from 3 to 7 p.m. on April 15 where property owners can learn about the Orleans County Agricultural District No. 1.

The county has one consolidated agricultural district and property owners this year have their once-every-8-year chance to remove land from the district. Property owners every year have an opportunity to add land to the district.

County officials will be at Hoag Library on April 15 to answer questions about the ag district. There will be a map of the current district for people to look up their land to see if it’s in or out of the district.

The Orleans County Agricultural District No. 1 covers over 118,000 acres or approximately 48% of the land mass of the county. All currently included landowners will receive notification of the ag district review and the forms should be returned by March 31.

The recent Agricultural Census showed sales for farm products in 2022 totaled $233.6 million in Orleans County, up 50.4 percent from the $155.3 million in 2017, a growth of $78.3 million. That includes sales of fruit, vegetables, milk, livestock and other farm products.

A snapshot of Orleans County’s ag economy in 2022 includes:

  • 444 farms (498 in 2017)
  • 130,055 land in agriculture (129,573 in 2017)
  • average size of farm – 293 acres (260 in 2017)
  • estimated value of land and buildings – $1.416 billion
  • 33 farms at more than 1,000 acres, but 140 are 10 to 49 acres, and 131 are 50 to 179 acres.
  • 132 farms sold less than $2,500, while 126 sold $100,000 or more.

For more information about agricultural districts or the ongoing review of the Orleans County Agricultural District No. 1, contact Corey Winters (Planner, Orleans County Department of Planning & Development) at (585) 589-3197.