High-quality farmland areas have relatively large amounts of prime or unique farmland. High-development areas have relatively rapid loss of high-quality farmland to development. Other areas do not meet the two threshold tests. The relative measures compare sub-county areas against their respective statewide averages. This map should be used to identify broad trends, not to make highly localized interpretations.
The map of the U.S. above identifies our bestmost fertile and productiveland threatened by development. The red areas represent the high-quality acres in the path of development, the green areas the high-quality acres less threatened. Every state in the nation lost some of its very best land to sprawling development. (Click on your state to see the closeup view.)
While this loss is regrettable, it is not inevitable. We know how to save our farmland; we simply must do more. Communities, states and now the federal government are working to protect this irreplaceable resource by:
Stopping the loss of our best farmland through effective planning and smart growth that directs development to less productive land;
Permanently saving farms through publicly funded agricultural conservation easement programs;
Supporting farming practices that enhance the environmental benefits of farmland; and
Expanding efforts to increase the profitability of urban-edge farming.
Make sure you know what's happening in your state and community.