North Carolina is engaged in the production of a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and ornamental plants which are made available to consumers worldwide. Farm cash receipts for horticulture in North Carolina for the year 2016 totaled more than $1.4 billion (North Carolina Agricultural Statistics, 2017).
Vegetables, fruits, nuts, and berries account for $647 million with Nursery, Christmas Trees, and other crops making up $817 million. North Carolina is the largest sweet potato grower nationally accounting for 54% of the U.S. crop. Also North Carolina is the third largest producer of fresh market strawberries nationally.
North Carolina fruit and vegetable production includes a diverse portfolio of crops including pumpkins, apples, squash, blueberry, grapes, peaches, strawberry, bell peppers, cucumbers, cabbage, sweet corn, and tomatoes. These and the many other horticultural crops and the industry in general face many economic challenges including costs of production, marketing, risk management and labor issues.
NC Specialty Crops & Climate Change – ARE Extension Conference November 2020
NC Specialty Crop Outlook 2020 – ARE Extension Conference November 2020
Caneberry Budgeting and Prices – Extension Agent Training December 2020
Strawberry Budgeting and Economics – Extension Agent Training December 2020
2020 North American Raspberry and Blackberry Pricing Survey Results
NC State Economist – Specialty Crops in 2020: COVID-19 and Other Challenges
Economic Data Sources
Market Price Data:
USDA Agricultural Marketing Service
USDA Specialty Crop Market News
Enterprise Budget Information
A Database of US Specialty Crop Enterprise Budgets:
Machinery Cost Calculation Spreadsheet
In the news
Feb 28, 2022
North Carolina Farms Grapple with Labor Shortages
Even with a growing dependence on migrant labor, there still is not enough workers to fill farm jobs across North Carolina.
Dec 22, 2021
Grain Market & Crop Budget Webinar Recording and Resources
NC State Extension has resources and professionals available to help growers make planting decisions based on the current input prices.
Feb 7, 2022
The New Crop Comparison Tool Helps Farmers Evaluate Inputs and Determine What Crops to Grow
Washburn, Gatiboni and Everman all emphasized that managing costs will be particularly vital in 2022.
Dec 1, 2021
Study Suggests Crop Insurance Plays Small Role in Discouraging Cover Crop Use in Indiana
Study findings could help researchers understand more about the unintended consequences of crop insurance subsidies.