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Abstract

Minifarms—those with less than $2,500 in farm sales annually—account for about 25 percent of all U.S. farms, almost 2 percent of U.S. harvested cropland, and less than 1 percent of U.S. farm product sales. Minifarms' assets are underused; for example, the value of minifarm land and buildings per dollar of sales is $64.65, compared with $2.50 for large farms. Most minifarm operators spend over 200 days a year doing off-farm work, and probably maintain the minifarms primarily as rural residences. Significant off-farm income more than offsets negative farm income on these farms, and total income is higher than for most other farm sales classes. More than 54 percent of all minifarms are in the South, representing a third of all farms in that region.

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