Kern County’s crop value last year topped 2017’s value by 3 percent, according to a new report from the Kern County Farm Bureau. 

The county’s farmers and ranchers produced nearly $7.5 billion worth of crops and other agricultural commodities in 2018, the report said. Grapes were the top producers, raking in $1.51 billion. However, the report said there was about a 2 percent decrease in value from 2017. 

“It is always incredible to see what our farmers are able to produce with the various challenges they continue to face, [a] lack of water supply, weather fluctuations, and labor to name a few,” said Farm Bureau Executive Director Ariana Joven. “A 3 percent increase in production is something our agricultural industry and community should be proud of.”

Besides grapes, the other top producers were almonds, pistachios, citrus and milk, making up $4.4 billion of the total value, according to the report. Pistachios are now the number three crop in the county, doubling their value from $555 million in 2017 to $1.14 billion last year. 

“This report is a testament to the diversity of crops produced in Kern County. To produce these type[s] of gross dollar revenues, it takes the right land, water, labor, and other various resources,” said Farm Bureau President Catalino Martinez. “Our agricultural community in Kern are hard workers and continue to innovate despite restraints.”