- Monroe County Agriculture
- Monroe County's Agricultural Districts
- Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan Executive Summary
- Census of Agriculture
- Alternative Farming
- Right to Farm Laws
- Health and Disease Information
Agriculture is an important part of life here in Monroe County. According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, we have 585 farms and over 133,000 acres of farmland in Monroe County. Farm products from Monroe County generate approximately $72 million in sales annually and support thousands of local jobs.
The Monroe County Farmland Protection Resource Center is designed to provide farmers, local officials, and interested citizens with the tools they need to help preserve farmland in their community. By working together and taking advantage of available resources we can ensure a bright future for agriculture in Monroe County.
Article 25AA of the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law, titled Agricultural Districts, provides counties with the opportunity to create agricultural districts for the purpose of protecting and promoting the agriculture industry. Once created, the law requires that each district must be reviewed on an eight, ten or twelve year basis to see if it is still achieving its intended purpose. In Monroe County, districts are reviewed every eight years.
In 2002, the New York State Legislature adopted a change to the Agricultural and Markets Law that enables property owners to petition for adding viable agricultural lands to an established agricultural district at any time. Previous to this change, property owners wishing to add or remove lands from an agricultural district had to wait until the established eight-year anniversary date to petition the County Legislature for action. In 2003, the State Legislature again amended the law enabling County Legislatures to establish a 30-day period once a year to receive petitions from property owners to be added to an existing district; removals from the district must still wait for the eight-year anniversary. The 30-day Monroe County addition period occurs in April and May. See related documents to download a copy of the annual addition form.
Monroe County has four agricultural districts:
- Midwestern Agricultural District (#1)
Location: Towns of Sweden (part), Ogden (part) and Riga (part)
Total Acreage: 16,067 acres
Creation Date: 1973
Last Review: 2005
Next Review: 2013
- Southwestern Agricultural District (#2)
Location: Towns of Chili, Riga (part) and Wheatland
Total Acreage: 36,257 acres
Creation Date: 1974
Last Review: 2006
Next Review: 2014
- Northwestern Agricultural District (#5)
Location: Hamlin, Clarkson, Sweden (part), Parma, Greece and Ogden (part)
Total Acreage: 38,153 acres
Creation Date: 1976
Last Review: 2008
Next Review: 2016
- Eastern Agricultural District (#6)
Location: Towns of Henrietta, Mendon, Perinton, Penfield, Pittsford, Rush, Webster
Total Acreage: 47,618 acres
Creation Date: 1975
Last Review: 2007
Next Review: 2015
Learn more about New York State Agriculture and Farmland Protection.
- Download the 2007 Eastern Agricultural District #6 Report
- Download the 2006 Southwestern Agricultural District #2 Report
- Download the 2005 Midwestern Agricultural District #1 Report
- Download the 2008 Northwestern Agricultural District #5 Report
- Download the Agriculture Data Statement
- Download the Agriculture District Law 2009
- Download the County Agricultural Districts Map
- Download the Monroe County Agricultural Districts Annual Addition Form
The Monroe County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan (1999) (47k PDF) was prepared by the Monroe County Department of Planning and Development and Cornell Cooperative Extension on behalf of the Monroe County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board. It was funded in part by an Agricultural and Farmland Protection Planning grant awarded by the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets, the Rural NY Grant Program administered by the NY Planning Federation with support of the J.M. Kaplan Fund, the Joyce Mertz-Gilmore Foundation and the Botwinick Wolfensohn Foundation and Monroe County.
The report discusses the need for the plan; the history of agricultural planning in Monroe County; agricultural characteristics and trends in the county; the relationship between municipal planning and agriculture; financial assistance available to farm operations; findings of cost of community services studies; current issues and concerns in agriculture, such as taxes, viability, marketing; and a Land Evaluation and Site Assessment (LESA) analysis.
Chapter 9 of the Plan provides a detailed list of recommendations for various levels of government and agencies in four main subject areas: farmland preservation and protection, economic development/viability/marketing, education, database maintenance and development. Dr. Robert King, Director, Agriculture & Life Sciences Institute, Monroe COmmunity College, is responsible for implementing the Farmland Protection Plan.
The Census of Agriculture is taken every five years, in years ending in 2 and 7; the last census was taken in 2007. The Census of Agriculture provides detailed agricultural statistics for every county, county equivalent and state as well as the nation as a whole.
According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, since 2002 the number of farms in Monroe County has decreased 7% while the total land in farms is up 25% and the size of each farm is up 34%. Please see Related Documents which show a profile of the Monroe County Agriculture Census.
Learn more about the Census of Agriculture from the USDA.
- Download the 2007 Agriculture Census New York State - County Summary Highlights
- Download the 2007 Agriculture Census Monroe County Profile