Agri-business Has $29.3 Billion Impact On Region

New Study Details Economic Impact Of Ag In Kansas City Area

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (September 8, 2016) – Agriculture and its related businesses continue to be a driving force in the regional economy, according to an analysis (LINK) released by the Agricultural Business Council of Kansas City, the American Royal, and the Kansas Department of Agriculture.

Using the most recent data available, 74 agriculture, food, and food processing sectors were analyzed to determine their overall contribution to the economy supported by the Kansas City Agribusiness Council.

These 74 sectors have an estimated total economic impact of approximately $ 29.3 billion and support 114,503 jobs in the Greater Kansas City area.

The study looked at the impact of agriculture, food, and food processing sectors of the 20 counties contained in the Greater Kansas City area. The study found those agri-business sectors:

  • Account for 7.7 percent of the entire workforce in the area, or 114,503 jobs; and
  • Contribute approximately 22 percent of the Gross Regional Product, or an impact of $29.3 billion.

In looking at the components of the agri-business sector, landscaping and horticultural services is the top employer in the agricultural industry with 9,965 employees.  Running a close second is beef cattle ranching (and related businesses) with 8,438 employees.  The animal processing industry (excluding poultry) directly contributes about $2.1 billion to the regional economy.

A more expansive view of agri-business’s impact includes related retail sectors such as restaurants, food and beverage stores, garden and farm supply businesses.  These additional sectors grow the total impact to 16.9 percent of the region’s employment and 29.59 percent of the gross regional product.

“This study illustrates the continuing strong role agri-business plays in this region’s economy,” said Bob Petersen, executive director of the Agricultural Business Council.”   He continued, “These are impressive numbers – 22% of the Gross Regional Product.  And a more expansive view that encompasses the food sector grows the employment impact to nearly 17 percent.”

Lynn Parman, president and CEO of the American Royal, said “the American Royal’s mission of impacting the future of agriculture is more important now than ever. Providing scholarships and agriculture education programs to ensure we have a pipeline of employees is vital to this burgeoning KC industry,” she added.

“Agriculture is the largest industry, employer and economic contributor in the state of Kansas, and this study has confirmed that impact within the greater Kansas City area,” said Secretary of Agriculture Jackie McClaskey. “The Kansas Department of Agriculture is pleased to work with the Agricultural Business Council to continue exploring opportunities for growth of agribusinesses in this region.”

About The Agricultural Business Council of Kansas City

The Agricultural Business Council of Kansas City is an association that advocates growth and awareness of the food, fiber, agri-science and related industries in the Kansas City region.

About the American Royal Association

Woven through the history of Kansas City since 1899, the American Royal provides opportunities for youth and adults from around the country to compete in our Livestock Show, ProRodeo, Horse Shows and the World Series of BBQ.  These events allow the American Royal, a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit organization to give over $1 million annually for youth scholarships and support agriculture education programs. Over 270,000 attendees annually attend American Royal events that generate over $60 million of economic impact. To learn more about the American Royal visit

About the Kansas Department of Agriculture

KDA is the state agency devoted to the total support of agriculture in Kansas. The department works for the entire Kansas agriculture sector, including farmers, ranchers, food establishments and agribusinesses. The department is dedicated to providing support and assistance to make Kansas businesses successful and encouraging more agribusinesses to expand in or relocate to Kansas.


For more information contact:

  • For general questions, either Bob Petersen (816) 912-2993, Lynn Parman (816) 569-4040 or Jackie McClaskey (785) 564-6700
  • For questions about the study and the underlying economics, Josh Roe, assistant secretary, Kansas Dept. of Agriculture at (785) 564-6700
  • For questions regarding the ag industry impact, Jackie Klippenstein, vice president, Dairy Farmers of America, (816) 801-6392