In a recent visit to California, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack talked about a number of economic accomplishments that stand out in the current economy. Nationwide, ag exports have reached $135 billion and there’s a trade surplus. Five years ago the ag surplus was nearly $5 billion. Now, the surplus has climbed to $42 billion. California leads the way in production and ag exports at more than $12 billion annually. According to Vilsack, 8,400 jobs are created for every 1 billion dollars in trade.

Now that President Obama signed off on free trade agreements with Colombia, South Korea and Panama, U.S agriculture will get a nice boost. The forecast for trade opportunities with South Korea is nearly $2 billion, and there’s the potential of several hundred million dollars for the other two countries.