Silver Bow County is a small county located in the southwestern part of the state, and contains the major town of Butte. About 13% of land in Silver Bow County is classified as farm land.

Overview

Population
34,993
County Size (acres)
459,509
Land in Farms (%)
13.1
Number of Farms
142
Median Farm Size (acres) 100
Average Farm Size (acres) 425

 

 

 

 

 

 
Source: Census of Agriculture: Table 1: County Summary Highlights: 2017 

Farm Revenue

Farm revenue (which includes the market value of products sold, government payments, and farm-related income) were nearly $3 million while production expenses were slightly over $3 million.

Market Value of Products Sold
$2,729,000
Government Payments
0
Farm-Related Income
$141,000
Total Farm Production Expenses
$3,022,000
Net Farm Cash Income ($151,000)



 

 

 

Source: Census of Agriculture: Tables 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6:  2017   

Taxation

The market value of all property in Silver Bow County was approximately $3.6 billion in 2019.  The taxable value assigned by the Montana Department of Revenue was $77 million.  Agricultural Property (as defined by Montana Department of Revenue as Class 3 Property) comprised 1% of the county's taxable value.

Property Tax Summary
2019
2014
Market Value of Property $3,664,222,616 $2,129,955,318
Taxable Value of All Property $77,633,385 $64,271,453
Taxable Value ofAgricultural Property $396,519 $456,486
Ag Taxable Value as % of All Property 1% 1%



 

 

 

Source: Montana Dept. of Rev. Montana Taxes by County in2018and Montana Taxes by County in2014  

Market Value of Crops and Livestock 

After adjusting for inflation, the market value of crops increased by 64%, while the market value of livestock decreased by 53%, from 1997 to 2017.

 

Market Value of Crops and Livestock-Silver Bow County

Sources: Census of Agriculture: Table 1: County Summary Highlights: 2017 and St. Louis Fed Producer Price Index

Crops and Livestock

Cattle comprised 75% of total crop and livestock sales in 2017.

Crops and Livestock-Silver Bow County

Source: Census of Agriculture:  Table 2: County Summary Highlights: 2017

Farm Size by Acres 

The percentage of smaller farms, less than 500 acres, increased from 77% to 80%, while the percentage of larger farms, 500 acres or more, decreased from 23% to 20% from 2012 to 2017.

Farm Size
by Acres
2017 2012
Number of
Farms

%
Number of
Farms

%
1 to 9 15 11 8 6
10 to 49 50 35 26 19
50 to 179 30 21 51 36
180 to 499     19 13 23 16
500 to 999 12 8 14 10
1,000 or more 16 11 18 13
TOTAL 142 100 140 100
Source: Census of Agriculture:  Table 2: County Summary Highlights: 2017

Farm Size by Sales

The percentage of the smallest farms with less than $100,000 in sales increased from 93% to 95%, while the percentage of the largest farms with sales of $100,000 or more decreased from 7% to 5% from 2012 to 2017.

Farm Size 
by Sales
2017 2012
Number of 
Farms

%
Number of 
Farms

%
Less than 2,500 80 56 74 53
2,500 to 4,999 17 12 7 5
5,000 to 9,999 8 6 16 11
10,000 to 24,999 16 11 12 9
25,000 to 49,999 7 5 15 11
50,000 to 99,999 7 5 6 4
100,000 or more 7 5 10 7
TOTAL 142 100 140 100

Source: Census of Agriculture: Table 1: County Summary Highlights: 2017  

Tillage and Land Use

No farms used reduced or intensive tillage or cover crops in 2017.

Tillage
2017 2012
Number of 
Farms

%
Number of 
Farms

%
No tillage 1 1 0 0
Reduced tillage 0 0 0 0
Intensive tillage 0 0 9 6
Cover crops 0 0 4 3
TOTAL 142   140  
Source: Census of Agriculture: Table 41 Land Use Practices
 

Producer Profile 

The county producer population was younger than the Montana producer population. Forty-one percent of county producers were under 55 years of age, while 31% were over 65 years of age. Thirty-four percent of the Montana producer population were under 55, while 36% were over 65 years of age. Fifty-nine percent of producers in the county were males, while 60% of Montana producers were males. Farming was the primary occupation for 59% of county producers, while farming was the primary occupation for 50% of Montana producers.

Characteristics
County State
Number of 
Producers

%
Number of 
Producers

%
Age
18 -25 10 4 570 1
25 to 34 10 4 3,285 7
35 to 44 48 19 5,179 11
45 to 54 36 14 7,309 15
55 to 64 70 28 13,838 29
65 to 74 48 19 11,469 24
75 and older 31 12 5,587 12
Gender
Male 150 59 28,563 60
Female 103 41 18,673 40
Primary Occupation
Yes 63 25 23,847 50
No 190 75 24,314 50
TOTAL PRODUCERS

253

100 48,161 100

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Census of Agriculture: Table 45 Selected Operation and Producer Characteristics  

Top Crops by Acre

The top crops were hay and haylage.

Tops Crops by Acre-Silver Bow County

 Source: Census of Agriculture: Table 1: County Summary Highlights: 2017

Top Livestock

The top livestock were cattle, sheep, hogs, and poultry (chickens).

Livestock
Number of Head
Cattle 3,679
Sheep 272
Chicken - Layers 229
Hogs 12

 

 

 

 

Source: Census of Agriculture: Tables 11 (Cattle) and 13 (Sheep) and 19 (Poultry)

Employment Impact

Agricultural production employed 154 workers, or less than 1% of the county’s labor force.  According to IMPLAN, economic impact model, 50 of the workers were directly employed in production agriculture.  An additional 50 workers were employed in businesses supporting agricultural production, such as feed and fertilizer dealers, and another 54 workers were employed in other related businesses, such as grocery and drugs stores. For every 10 jobs on farms and ranches, 21 additional jobs are generated in the county.  

Impact Type
Labor Force
Impact Multipliers
County Labor Force 17,135  
Direct Impact 50
Indirect Impact 50 1.00
Induced Impact 54 1.08
Total Impact 154 2.08
Agriculture Share (%) 1  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov/#cntyaa and IMPLAN Estimates

Value Added Impacts

Farms and ranches generated $6.2 million of value-added, or less than 1% of the county’s total gross domestic product of $1,492 million in 2017.  According to IMPLAN, $1.2 million was directly contributed by farmers and ranchers.  An additional $3.7 million was generated by businesses supporting agricultural production and $1.2 million was generated by other related businesses.  Each dollar of value-added in agriculture by a farmer or rancher contributes an additional $4.00 of value-added in other sectors of the county’s economy.  Please note:  there is minimal agricultural production in Silver Bow County; hence these IMPLAN estimates must be used with caution.

 


Impact Type
Value-Added
($1 million)

Impact Multipliers
County GDP* 1,492.0  
Direct Impact** 1.2
Indirect Impact** 3.7 3.00
Induced Impact** 1.2 1.00
Total Impact** 6.2 4.00
Agriculture Share (%) 0.4  











Sources:  * St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank, ** IMPLAN Estimates  

References


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