Farm sales

Direct-to-consumer agricultural sales reach $10.7 billion in 2020

Updated information from the USDA’s Economic Research Service shows that in 2020, US farms sold nearly $10.7 billion worth of food products directly to retail outlets and supply chains. This includes restaurants, grocery stores, regional distributors and local institutions. The figure is nearly $2.8 billion, or 35% more than 2019 sales.

From 2019 to 2020, sales at farmers’ markets, restaurants, and grocery stores increased by 11 and 13 percent, respectively, while sales at farm stores, community-supported agriculture, and other sales channels direct to consumer increased by 79%. Meanwhile, sales to regional distributors increased by 73%.

However, sales to local institutions were down 86% in 2020 compared to 2019, likely due to closures or operating restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Overall, in 2020, 73% of total direct sales took place through intermediary supply chains, while the remaining 27% were direct-to-consumer outlets.

High-income direct selling farms, defined here as those with gross cash farm income (GCFI) of $350,0000 or more, increased their direct sales by $2.4 billion (38%) from 2019 to 2020 , which accounted for 81% of all direct sales. Sales. Among low-income direct selling farms, defined as those with a GCFI of less than $75,000, 85% of their direct sales were through direct-to-consumer outlets in 2020.

The USDA adds that about seven percent of the two million U.S. farms sold produce through direct-to-consumer outlets, and nearly 1 percent through intermediary supply chains. The remaining 93% of US farms sell their products through other marketing channels, such as feedlots, slaughterhouses, ethanol processors, grain mills, and more.