Delaware Agriculture Industry by Ed Kee

Delaware is in a prime location for the agriculture industry to thrive as its location is central in the Eastern United States and can reach 1/3 of the population within an 8 hour drive. 510,000 acres of Delaware are in agriculture which is 41% of the total land mass. 24% of the land is permanently preserved which allows agriculture to remain as Delaware’s number one industry. The amount of land and farms has decreased which is due to development but the amount of food produced has increased due to vastly improved technology. The canning industry in Delaware began in 1855 in Dover when the first canning factory was made. It allowed for food to be preserved and prevented microorganisms from getting inside which increased the lifespan of the food. The number of vegetable processors has decreased from 103 in 1919 to only 3 processors being in Delaware today. This is due to consolidation of companies into larger companies and a higher cost of business. The most surprising fact I learned was how tomatoes used to be grown in Delaware in large numbers but now no tomatoes are grown. Agriculture has to remain profitable for farmers but there also has to be a balance of regulations to keep consumers safe. The majority of farms are family owned and the best way to keep their land as farm land is to ensure they are profitable.

Leave a Reply