You all know (we hope) that Butte County’s top agricultural crops are rice and almonds. But the U.S. Department of Agriculture goes into much more detail than that in classifying and quantifying farming data. The most recent Census of Agriculture was in 2002, and we’ve compiled a list comparing Butte’s standings from that year to the previous census, back in 1997. Except for government subsidy levels, they don’t look too good. We’ve thrown in a few random but related stats at the end for fun.

Number of farms: 2,128, down 8 percent

Land in farms: 381,532, down 11 percent

Market value of production: $251,970,000, down 15 percent

Market value average of production: $118,407, down 8 percent

Government payments: $9,411,000 in 2002, up 66 percent

Government payments, average per farm: $35,381, up 60 percent

Average age of principal farm operator: 55.2

Number of male farm operators: 1,830

Female farm operators: 298

White farmers: 3,006

Black farmers: 9

Hispanic/Latino farmers: 229

Number of pheasants: 31,086

Colonies of bees: 14,906

Value of poultry and eggs: $707,000 [Butte County in 2002.]