As all farmers and real estate agents know, an acre is defined as an area one furlong long by 4 rods wide. An acre is standard measurement used in the United States and the UK. But what is it to the rest of us? Other than what one of us could plow with a yoke of oxen in a day, what does an acre really mean?
Basically if you can picture a football field, that’s pretty close to an acre in size. Officially, it is 43,560 square feet, and a football field is 48,000 square feet.
Our standard acre isn’t the same worldwide. In fact, Irish and Scottish acres are bigger than those in the US. A Scottish acre is equivalent to 1.27 standard acres. The Irish measure is even larger, 1.6 British or US acres.
In Washington State, the average farm size is roughly 375 acres. The majority of farms (62%) in our state, however, run on about 50 acres and gross - not net - less than $10,000 per year. These 24,500 smaller farms manage roughly 1.3 million acres of land each year.
About 2,600 (7%) farms in Washington manage 5.9 million acres of land. While these larger farms gross - not net - more than $500,000 annually, they also have high expenses as well.