Chester County is a major provider of agricultural products, second in the state, with a strong agricultural economy and extensive areas of preserved farmland. This web page provides information on the farm economy, the Agricultural Development Council, and the farmland preservation program.
Programs and Projects
The Ag Council raises awareness of the economic impact of the local farming industry and promotes excellence in farming. This outreach assists county farmers market their businesses, helps create an environment to attract new farmers, and informs residents and municipal officials about the importance of local agriculture. They also partner with other organizations to address agricultural issues. Learn More
Chester County has a very active farmland preservation program that has permanently preserved over 37,000 acres of active farmland in the county. This program is run by the Open Space Preservation Department under the guidance of the Agricultural Land Preservation Board (ALPB). Learn More
Planning Toolbox — Agriculture
The goal for Agriculture is to promote environmentally and economically sustainable agriculture through which agricultural soils are conserved, agriculture is recognized as an economically viable land use, and the industry of farming is encouraged at an appropriate scale throughout the county. View tools that can help achieve this goal at the municipal level through sustainable and energy conservation practices.
County-wide Planning Policies
Landscapes3 is the comprehensive plan for Chester County, and renews the county's commitment to balancing growth and preservation to foster vibrant communities. Landscapes3 is organized around six goal areas: Preserve, Protect, Appreciate, Live, Prosper, and Connect, and addresses land use, growth, and preservation as part of the Landscapes Map. Agriculture is addressed primarily within the Preserve and Prosper goal areas of Landscapes3, with limited discussion within Live.
Issues and Trends
Ag Council Info Sheets
The Ag Council develops data sheets on a variety of agricultural topics to assess agriculture's contribution to Chester County's economy and landscape. View Info Sheets
Effective Agricultural Zoning
Effective agricultural zoning can reap many benefits in a rural municipality, including protecting agricultural land by minimizing land use conflicts by separating agricultural lands from non-agricultural activities, and retaining a critical mass of agricultural land that promotes effective operations and the overall strength of the agricultural community. Learn More
View a list of partner agencies that provide technical assistance with zoning implementation and regulation standards.