Harney County

Key Organizations and Activities

A community food assessment for Harney and Malheur counties was completed in 2009 by Southeast Oregon Regional Food Bank, which noted that, “isolation and the lack of a local food system infrastructure paired with persistent poverty and unemployment that plague

the region have made food insecurity a critical issue faced by many people throughout

southeast Oregon.” A Second Year Progress Report was subsequently published in 2010.

A Local Food Guide and Community Cookbook for Southeast Oregon was started in 2010, which is distributed by the Argus Observer. That year, the Crossroad Resource Center also published a study titled, “Local Foods as Economic Recovery,” which included data from Harney County.

Harney County Senior & Community Services Center administers the county food bank. However, there are currently no other local organizations dedicated to food systems work.

According to the USDA Census of Agriculture, since 2002 Harney County has seen a nearly 20% reduction in the number of farmers/ranchers with cattle, dairy cows, hogs or sheep. There has, however, been an increase in the number of farmers selling poultry and eggs, and 10 farmers now report sales of fruit and vegetables. There is now a Harney County Farmers’ Market held in Hines, which supports about a dozen vendors.

Harney County has not engaged substantively in farm-to-school activity – with no districts in the county applying for Oregon Department of Education funding to support procurement and related educational programming in the 2014-2015 school year.

Community Goals and Recommendations

Goals identified by participants in the 2009 community food assessment included:

  1. Create an action-oriented, multi-stakeholder coalition that addresses individual and community food security and the needs of the agricultural community.
  2. Increase public awareness of food and agriculture-related issues and opportunities.
    1. Create an asset map of the local food system.
    2. Develop and distribute a local food guide.
  3. Create connections that build a food system that is supported by and benefits local producers, processors, retailers and consumers.
    1. Facilitate direct relationships between producers and retailers.
  4. Increase and maintain access to a stable food supply in underserved areas.
    1. Establish food pantries in communities not currently served.
  5. Increase access to healthy, fresh, locally-grown food throughout the region.
    1. Establish WIC, Senior voucher, and SNAP access at farmers’ markets and stands.
    2. Increase the amount of fresh food in emergency food programs.
    3. Promote programs for self-reliance, gardening and nutrition.
  6. Support and encourage the development of new community-based food projects.
    1. Promote development of community gardens and kitchens.
    2. Promote development of farmers’ markets and value-added food production.

These are appropriate goals for Harney County – but need more local engagement and support.

GENERAL INFORMATION
POPULATION Oregon Harney
Population (2007) 3,745,455 7,453
Population (2014) 3,962,710 7,265
Population change from 2007 to 2014 6%   -3%
ESTIMATED SPENDING ON FOOD (WESTERN REGION) Oregon Harney
2007 ($6,811 per household – average 2.6 persons) $9,811,651,540 $19,523,993
2014 ($7,175 per household – average 2.6 persons) $10,935,555,481 $20,048,606
Change from 2007 to 2014 11%   3%
FOOD ENVIRONMENT
SUPERMARKETS AND OTHER GROCERY STORES Oregon Harney
2007 Grocery Stores 751 2
2013 Grocery Stores 768 2
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013 2.3%   0.0%
2007 Citizens Per Grocery Store 4,987 3,727
2013 Citizens Per Grocery Store 5,103 3,630
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013 2.3%   -2.6%
OTHER SPECIALTY FOOD STORES Oregon Harney
2007 394 1
2013 366 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013 -7.1%   -100.0%
LOW INCOME AND LOW ACCESS TO A GROCERY STORE Oregon Harney
2006 Percentage 1.0% 8.3%
2006 People Affected 36,785 619
2010 Percentage (latest data available) 5.0% 12.6%
2010 People Affected 195,215 933
Percentage Change 2006 to 2010 404.3%   51.1%
Average Cost of a Meal Oregon Harney
2009 (National Cost: $2.54) $2.60 $2.76
2013 (National Cost: $2.79) $2.77 $2.85
Percentage Change 2009 to 2013 6.5%   3.3%
INDIVIDUALS BELOW THE POVERTY LEVEL Oregon Harney
2009 (5-year estimates 2005-2009) 13.6% 15.0%
2014 (5-year estimates 2010-2014) 16.7% 21.1%
Percentage Change 2009 to 2012 22.8%   40.7%
FOOD INSECURITY RATE Oregon Harney
2009 16.8% 21.4%
2013 15.8% 18.6%
Percentage Change 2009 to 2013 -6.0%   -13.1%
SNAP PARTICIPATION RATE Oregon Harney
2009 68% 60%
2013 73% 68%
Percentage Change 2009 to 2013 7.4%   13.3%
FARMERS MARKETS ACCEPTING SNAP BENEFITS Oregon Harney
2015 Farmers Markets 172 1
2015 Farmers Markets Accepting SNAP 84 0
Percent of Total 49%   0%
COMMUNITY CAPACITY
Oregon Harney
Community Food System Assessment Completed Y
Food System Council or Working Group Formed and Active N
Food System Plan Published N
Dedicated Local Food Organization(s) (beyond food assistance) N
COMMUNITY GARDENS Oregon Harney
2014 Number of Community Garden Sites >158 Unknown
2014 Number of Garden Plots Unknown Unknown
2014 Citizens Per Garden Site <24,804 Unknown
NUMBER OF SCHOOL GARDENS Oregon Harney
2007 Number of School Gardens 161 1
Number of Schools Included 1,262 12
Percentage of Schools Reported to Have a Garden 12.8% 8.3%
2014 Number of School Gardens (new data as of 1/25/2015) 582 3
Number of Schools Included 1,174 6
Percentage of Schools Reported to Have a Garden 49.6% 50.0%
Percentage Change 2007 to 2014 261.5%   200.0%
Access to Seed to Supper/Master Gardeners or Equivalent Y
Access to Cooking Matters or Equivalent N
FARM BASE
LAND IN FARMS Oregon Harney
2002: Total Land in Farms 17,080,422 1,575,020
2012: Total Land in Farms 16,301,578 1,505,437
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -4.6%   -4.4%
AVERAGE COST PER ACRE Oregon Harney
2002: Average Cost per Acre $1,202 $289
2012: Average Cost per Acre $1,882 $548
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 56.6%   89.6%
NUMBER OF FARMS BY SALES RANGE Oregon Harney
2002: Total Farms 40,033 524
2012: Total Farms 35,439 497
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -11.5%   -5.2%
2002: Farms with Sales <$25,000 31,564 343
2012: Farms with Sales <$25,000 26,835 267
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -15.0%   -22.2%
2002: Farm with Sales $25,000 to $99,999 4282 90
2012: Farms with Sales $25,000 to $99,999 3958 81
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -7.6%   -10.0%
2002: Farms with Sales $100,000 to $249,999 1935 63
2012: Farms with Sales $100,000 to $249,999 1,755 67
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -9.3%   6.3%
2002: Farms with Sales >$250,000 2252 28
2012: Farms with Sales >$250,000 2891 82
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 28.4%   192.9%
FARMS WITH TYPICAL LOCAL FOOD CROPS Oregon Harney
2002: Vegetables, melons, potatoes, and sweet potatoes 1708 0
2012: Vegetables, melons, potatoes, and sweet potatoes 1889 8
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 10.6%  
2002: Fruits, tree nuts, berries 5659 0
2012: Fruits, tree nuts, berries 5245 2
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -7.3%
2002: Poultry and eggs (all poultry) 4588 46
2012: Poultry and eggs (all poultry) 6054 63
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 32.0%   37.0%
2002: Cattle and calves (farm with sales) 13654 323
2012: Cattle and calves (farm with sales) 11,638 284
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -14.8%   -12.1%
2002: Milk cows (farms with inventory) 1133 27
2012: Milk cows (farms with inventory) 686 13
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -39.5%   -51.9%
2002: Hogs and pigs (farms with sales) 1558 18
2012: Hogs and pigs   (farms with sales) 1172 11
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -24.8%   -38.9%
2002: Sheep and goats 3219 45
2012: Sheep and goats 2810 27
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -12.7%   -40.0%
2002: Total Farms Raising Typical Local Food Crops 31,519 459
2012: Total Farms Raising Typical Local Food Crops 29,494 408
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 -6.4%   -11.1%
FOOD CROP DIVERSITY Oregon Harney
2007 Number of Different Vegetable, Potato, and/or Melon Crops 42 0
2007 Number of Different Fruit, Berries, Nut Crops 27 0
2007 Number of Different Grain or Cereal Crops 16 1
2007 TOTAL FOOD CROPS 85   1
2007 Average # of different food crops 35 Less Than
2012 Number of Different Vegetable, Potato, and/or Melon Crops 42 10
2012 Number of Different Fruit, Berries, Nut Crops 27 3
2012 Number of Different Grain or Cereal Crops 16 3
2012 TOTAL FOOD CROPS 85   16
Percentage Change in Total Crops from 2007 to 2012 0.0%   1500.0%
2012 Average # of different food crops 38 Less Than
Percentage Change in Average # of crops from 2007 to 2012 8.6%
NUMBER OF ORGANIC FARMS Oregon Harney
2002: Organic Farms 515 3
2012: Organic Farms 554 4
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 7.6%   33.3%
AVERAGE AGE OF FARMERS Oregon Harney
2002: Average Age 54.9 53.8
2012: Average Age 59.6 58.1
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 8.6%   8.0%
FARM EMPLOYMENT Oregon Harney
2007 67,222 715
2014 61,967 772
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 -7.8%   8.0%
TOTAL FARM COMPENSATION Oregon Harney
2007 $1,020,772,000 $6,858,000
2014 $1,109,671,000 $10,852,000
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 8.7%   58.2%
AVERAGE ANNUAL COMPENSATION PER FARM JOB Oregon Harney
2007 $15,185 $9,592
2014 $17,907 $14,057
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 17.9%   46.6%
MARKET LINKAGES
FARMS WITH ON-FARM PACKING FACILITY Oregon Harney
2012: Number of Farms 761 3
2012 Percent of Farms with Packing Facilities 2.1% 0.6%
FARMS THAT PRODUCED AND SOLD VALUE-ADDED Oregon Harney
2007: Number of Farms 2,807 57
2012: Number of Farms 3,292 25
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 17.3%   -56.1%
2012 Percent of Farms Selling Value-Added 9.3% 5.0%
SALES TO INDIVIDUALS FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION Oregon Harney
2002: Number of Farms Reporting Direct Sales 6383 33
2012: Number of Farms Reporting Direct Sales 6,680 38
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 4.7%   15.2%
2012 Percent of Farms Selling Directly 18.8% 7.6%
2002: Total Reported Direct Sales $21,411,000 $72,000
2012: Total Reported Direct Sales $44,177,000 $63,000
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 106.3%   -12.5%
2002 Average Direct Sales per Participating Farm $3,354.38 $2,181.82
2012 Average Direct Sales per Participating Farm $6,613.32 $1,657.89
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 97.2%   -24.0%
2002 Farm Direct Sales per Capita $6.11 $9.57
2012 Farm Direct Sales per Capita $11.37 $8.61
Percentage Change 2002 to 2012 86.2%   -10.0%
FARMS MARKETING PRODUCTS THROUGH A CSA Oregon Harney
2007 Marketed through Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) 311 9
2012 Marketed through Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) 391 1
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 25.7%   -88.9%
2012 Percent of Farms Selling Through CSA 1.1% 0.2%
NUMBER OF FARMERS MARKETS Oregon Harney
2009 Farmers Markets (Data from ERS Food Environment Atlas) 100 0
2015 Farmers Markets 172 1
Percentage Change from 2009 to 2015 72%
2009 Citizens Per Farmers Market 38,235
2015 Citizens Per Farmers’ Market 23,039 7,265
Percentage Change 2009 to 2015 -39.7%  
SCHOOL DISTRICTS PURCHASING LOCAL FOOD Oregon Harney
2014-2015 School Year (ODE Grantee list) 130 0
Number of School Districts 202 10
Percent of Districts Reporting Purchases of Local Food 64%   0%
FARMS MARKETING DIRECT TO RETAIL Oregon Harney
2007 No Data
2012 1,898 2
2012 Percent of Farms Selling Direct to Retail 5.4%   0.4%
NUMBER OF SOLE PROPRIETOR FOOD BUSINESSES (NAICS 311) Oregon Harney
2007 467 0
2013 753 4
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 61.24%
TOTAL NUMBER OF FOOD PROCESSOR EMPLOYERS (NAICS 311) Oregon Harney
2007 498 1
2013 548 1
Percentage Change 2007 to 2012 10.0%   0.0%
2007 FOOD PROCESSORS BY NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES Oregon Harney
1-4 Employees 163 1
5-9 Employees 88 0
10-19 Employees 78 0
20-49 Employees 80 0
50-99 Employees 42 0
100-249 Employees 28 0
More than 250 Employees 19 0
2007 Total Processor Employment 19,582 D
Ranges for non-disclosed data 0-19 emp.
2007 Total Processor Payroll $686,511,000 D
2013 FOOD PROCESSORS BY NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES Oregon Harney
1-4 Employees 202 1
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013 23.9%   0.0%
5-9 Employees 110 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013  25.0%    
10-19 Employees 70 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013  -10.3%  
20-49 Employees 69 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013  -13.8%
50-99 Employees 41 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013  -2.4%
100-249 Employees 37 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013  32.1%
More than 250 Employees 19 0
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013  0.0%
2012 Total Processor Employment 21,661 A
Ranges for non-disclosed data 0-19 emp.
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013 10.6%
2012 Total Processor Payroll $848,004,000 D
Percentage Change 2007 to 2013 23.5%