February 15, 2017

Livestock Production Tied Closely to Per Capita Income

Adding livestock numbers to a county doesn’t just add animals and jobs. It adds real money to the bank accounts of people who live in that county.

“The Nebraska counties that have the highest percentage of livestock production tend to be about 10 percent higher than average in per-capita income,” said Ken Lemke, economist for Nebraska Public Power District. “For every 100 jobs in livestock production, there is a minimum of 30 to 100 additional jobs created within the county.”

Quoting a study by the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lemke noted that the impact of livestock is pervasive across the state. “Even in Omaha and Lincoln metro areas, the agricultural complex in Nebraska accounts for 20 to 25 percent of the sales in employment. That percentage, of course, is even higher in other areas of the state,” he said.

“The purpose of economic development is to improve the lives of people living within the county or the area – and livestock production is definitely an economic development strategy for Nebraska,” Lemke said.

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