Pacific Northwest

An unusually diverse climate and landscape make the Pacific Northwest one of the most vital – and most threatened – farming regions in the country.

From the Pacific Ocean to the Rocky Mountains, the Pacific Northwest region is one of the most ecologically rich farming areas in the United States.

To the west of the Cascade Range, deep soils and a mild maritime climate produce a vast array of fruits and vegetables. East of the Cascades, rolling, arid hills grow much of the nation's wheat, potatoes, apples and pears. And the maritime waters themselves support a major shellfish and seafood industry.

Farming is integral to the Pacific Northwest's economy, environment and way of life. But it's also at risk. Urban development and sprawl are rapidly consuming some of our best farmland.

At the same time, farmers face intense environmental challenges – from protecting fragile salmon habitat to adapting to the uncertainties of climate change.

We must act now.

Why are Pacific Northwest farms and ranches so important?

What are the challenges?


American Farmland Trust works to save the Pacific Northwest farm and ranch land that produces some of the best food in the world.

We help farmers and ranchers steward the land so that it continues to provide environmental benefits for all of us.

And we collaborate on initiatives that boost the region's ability to provide food for its communities.

In the Pacific Northwest, AFT:

  • Encourages better zoning and programs that permanently protect highly productive farmland, especially in the areas most threatened by urban sprawl
  • Pushes for funding to protect critical farm and ranch land – achieving a major increase in 2014 from $700,000 to $5.3 million in Washington, for instance
  • Improves habitat for endangered salmon by helping farmers restore riparian areas and address water quality issues
  • Works to develop a robust and sustainable food supply, with an emphasis on saving the land needed to grow local food

Our work would not be possible without you. Join us.


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