I visited the California Milk Advisory Board website today where I learned how important the dairy business is to California’s economy, not only monetarily but also physically, in the amount of milk these dairies produce.  California’s dairy industry contributes $63 billion in economic activity to the state and 41.2 billion pounds of milk which is 21 percent of the nations supply of milk. This study was conducted for the CMAB in 2008 by J/D/G Consulting Inc., an independent dairy industry research firm based in Florida.

The dairy industry created 443,574 jobs and that for every “on-the-farm” job there was 22 more “beyond-the-farm” jobs created. “This research offers perspective on how vital the dairy industry is to California with every dollar from sales of California milk contributing to the economy,” said Stan G. Andre, chief executive officer of the CMAB. “In addition to providing the food that feeds our communities, a typical dairy cow generates more than $34,000 in economic activity, and a herd of 100 cows creates 25 jobs for California residents each year.”

Let’s remember that agriculture is not just a job to those who are in the industry.  Dairymen, farmers and ranchers understand they are providing food and jobs on an ongoing basis to their communities and to the nation.  If we lose the land we lose much more than just land.

Here’s a visual I got from CMAB’s site explaining the study.  Click on the picture to enlarge.

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