The food and fiber system accounted for 20 percent of total U.S. business activity in 1980 and nearly 24 percent of total U.S. employment. Farmers' net cash income of $32.6 billion in 1980 declined 15.2 percent from 1979. Net farm income dropped 39 percent. Mainly due to drought conditions, productivity decreased 3 percent from its 1979 record high. Farm output, which increased 28 percent from 1970 to 1979, dipped 5 percent in 1980. Savings, an important factor in increasing farm capacity output and productivity, continued at a high level--totaling 31 percent of gross cash inflows and 44 percent of net cash income.


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