In 2021, about 89 percent of all farms were small family farms. Small family farms operated 45 percent of U.S. agricultural land and produced 18 percent of the total value of production. Farm size classifications are based on annual gross cash farm income, a measure of a farm’s revenue–including sales of crops and livestock, payments made under Federal agricultural programs, and other farm-related cash income–before deducting expenses.
Small family farms have gross cash farm income (GCFI) below $350,000. In comparison, large-scale family farms, with GCFI above $1 million, operated 27 percent of agricultural land and were responsible for 46 percent of the total value of production in 2021.
Midsize family farms, with GCFI between $350,000 and $1 million, operated 18 percent of agricultural land and similarly generated 18 percent of the total value of production.
Overall, family farms of all sizes comprised about 83 percent of the overall production value while making up 98 percent of all farms.
The remaining 2 percent of farms were classified as nonfamily. This category includes partnerships (of unrelated partners), nonfamily corporations, and farms with a hired manager unrelated to the owners. Despite accounting for such a small percent of farms, the nonfamily category was responsible for 17 percent of the total value of production.