A higher share of farm operators of large farms—with gross income of at least $1 million—have graduated from college, but the gap is closing

Line graph comparing the percent of farm operators who graduated from college 1990–2016 and farm size broken into three categories: Gross Cash Farm Income (GCFI) of $1,000,000 or more, GCFI of $350,000 to $999,999 and GCFI from $10,000 to $349,999.

Total U.S. farm output almost tripled from 1948 to 2017, though total labor hours in the farm sector declined more than 80 percent. The quality of agricultural labor, as measured by educational attainment and other labor attributes, increased over this time. Economic Research Service researchers determined that for farm labor, the growth in human capital attributes, such as education, mitigated the negative effects from a decline in farm labor hours worked.

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