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Nursery Crops and Mushrooms Remain the Champs of Santa Clara County Agriculture

The County of Santa Clara 2022 Crop Report shows the value of the county’s agricultural products rose last year to $359 million, more than a third of which came from nursery crops and mushrooms

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. — Nursery crops and mushrooms remained the top crops in Santa Clara County in 2022, according to the County’s latest Crop Report, which provides a yearly snapshot of the region’s diverse agriculture industry.

This year’s edition of the report illustrates how Santa Clara Valley farmers contribute to regional and even international food systems and where the food they grow winds up.

Overall, the value of Santa Clara County’s agricultural products rose 5.6% to nearly $359 million. Nursery crops remained the most valuable crop type in the county, increasing 5% percent to nearly $115 million in value. Nursery crops comprise a broad category that includes edible and decorative plants such as vegetable seedlings, fruit trees, bedding plants, roses and shrubs, and succulents.

Jacobs Farm employees work in a field in Santa Clara County.
Jacobs Farm employees work in a field in Santa Clara County. (Courtesy of Jacobs Farm)

Mushrooms, the second-most valuable crop in the county, were up 9% to nearly $87 million. Santa Clara County is one of the largest mushroom-growing regions in the United States, thanks in part to a favorable climate and the ability of farmers to grow lots of them on a small footprint.

It was also a good year for tomatoes. The value of fresh tomatoes increased by 70% to $16.9 million, while the value of processed tomatoes more than doubled, rising from $2.9 million to $6 million.

Supervisor Sylvia Arenas, who represents District 1 and most of the county’s farmland, said agriculture remains a cornerstone of the region’s economy and culture. 

“The agriculture industry is part of the fabric of Santa Clara County, improving our quality of life and making our community more sustainable,” said Arenas. “Growing food here in the South Bay benefits our economy and environment, improves our health and well-being, and makes us more resilient in the face of climate change. And, as a policy maker, I am committed to working to support the sustainability of agriculture in the Santa Clara Valley. As the value of our crops continues to grow, we celebrate the hard work, ingenuity, resilience and commitment of the diverse farmers and farmworkers that make this success possible.”

The 2022 Crop Report includes a series of vignettes that show how the food grown in Santa Clara County makes its way into the South Bay food system, from farmers markets and grocery stores to restaurants and food-assistance programs; becomes ingredients in processed foods like soups and salsas; and is shipped to international destinations such as Asia. 

“Food grown in Santa Clara County provides nourishment and enjoyment to local residents and people around the globe,” said Joe Deviney, the County’s agricultural commissioner. “The farmers and ranchers of the South Bay sustain our community, bolster the regional economy, and help support the broader food system.”

This year’s Crop Report includes profiles of five growers who operate in Santa Clara County:

  • B&T Farms, based in Gilroy, produces about 78 million pounds of processing tomatoes per year.
  • George Chiala Farms, located in Morgan Hill, grows about 50-60 million pounds of peppers every year.
  • Countryside Mushrooms, of Gilroy, sells most of its white, brown and portobello mushrooms to customers in California.
  • Jacobs Farm, a pioneer in the organic farming movement, grows vegetables and herbs on 180 acres at Martial Cottle Park in San José.
  • Bianchi Ranches, based in Gilroy, provides locally grown beef directly to consumers.

B&T Farms is particularly diverse in terms of the crops it grows and where they’re distributed. Its processed tomatoes are used in Campbell’s soups and its romaine lettuce shows up on McDonald’s burgers. B&T Farms’ cherries are shipped as far as Canada, Europe and Japan.

The 2022 Crop Report also highlights local producers of Asian vegetables, most of which are consumed by Bay Area residents, and nonprofit Veggielution, which provides locally grown food to low-income residents of East San José through the Eastside Connect program. 

Santa Clara County has roughly 191 Asian farmers who grow bok choy, daikon radish, yam leaf and other items that are popular in the Asian-American community. The value of those crops in 2022 was $11.5 million. 

To read the 2022 Crop Report and for information on agriculture in Santa Clara County, visit the Division of Agriculture website.


The County of Santa Clara government serves a diverse, multicultural population of 1.9 million residents in Santa Clara County, Calif., making it more populous than 14 states in the U.S. The County provides essential services to its residents, including public health protection, environmental stewardship, medical services through the County of Santa Clara Health System, child and adult protection services, homelessness prevention and solutions, roads, park services, libraries, emergency response to disasters, protection of minority communities and those under threat, access to a fair criminal justice system, and many other public benefits.

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Media Contact: Quan Vu/Aaron Kinney, Office of Communications and Public Affairs, [email protected], (408) 299-5119