Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Year Established 1921

Contact Information

Phone Number
(800) 292-3939
P.O. Box 30017
Lansing, MI 48909

Michigan’s food and agriculture industry is no small business. The state’s food and agriculture sector generates more than $104 billion of total economic activity for Michigan each year, employing 805,000 Michigan residents.

There are nearly 10 million acres of farmland in Michigan, and the state is home to 50,900 farms averaging 195 acres each. Michigan produces more than 300 commodities on a commercial basis, including tart cherries, blueberries, dry beans, floriculture products (including flowering hang baskets, Begonias, Easter lilies, geraniums, petunias and impatiens), and cucumbers for pickles.

There are approximately 3,283 food processing facilities and food warehouses in Michigan, and MDARD’s new Food and Agriculture Investment Program accelerated the growth of Michigan food and agriculture companies by providing incentives that focus on value-added opportunities. In FY 2018, 27 projects were approved, leading to 507 new jobs and $646.1 million in new investment.

Michigan’s food and agriculture exports are valued at $2.12 billion (CY 2017). The top five countries: Canada, China, Mexico, Japan, and Thailand. MDARD’s International Marketing Program helps Michigan’s food and agriculture businesses develop opportunities through new market development or expanding existing markets to increase export sales. To showcase Michigan companies in the global arena, the program organizes and implements activities such as export seminars, buyers’ missions, trade missions, and Michigan Pavilions at select domestic and international trade show.

Michigan’s food and agriculture industry touches the daily lives of every Michigan consumer from the food they eat, to the milk they drink, to the flowers they plant, to the gas they put in their car. As one of the state’s largest economic drivers, it’s a sector ripe with opportunity for business expansion, job growth, and business opportunities.