The families living on nearly 30,000 South Dakota farms certainly understand the value of a healthy local and state economy, even more so during the pandemic challenges we’ve faced this past year. Each of us plays a necessary role in preserving our local economy. Where we shop is a choice to invest in what makes our state a great place to live. Every dollar spent at local businesses matters because it truly adds up in order to sustain our communities. We often talk about sustainability as it relates to the soil and the future of farming, and the “sustainable” term is also essential to the health of our local homegrown economies.
From our executive board to our farmer members at South Dakota Corn, we encourage everyone to support local, independent, hometown and rural businesses in communities across our state.According to the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, South Dakota has more than 88,000 small businesses, which serve as the heart and soul of most of our communities. Supporting a healthy homegrown South Dakota starts with sales, although it can also include referrals and recommendations, as well as social media likes and shares. While it’s easy to get a feel-good vibe by shopping locally for the holidays, be sure to extend your local love throughout next year as well.
Support Local for Local SupportMain Street businesses often have mom-and-pop owners who live down the road from us and even employ our fellow neighbors and teenagers. What’s more, you’ll likely get a better customer service experience from people who know you or know you both live in the same community. With 98% of all farms owned by families, South Dakota farmers are small businesses too. That's why farmers understand how important it is to cultivate personal and professional relationships while operating a business.In addition to enjoying meals at the restaurants in town, farmers also shop locally by choosing area vendors for equipment sales and service, seed, fertilizer, crop protection, animal health, feed, and insurance coverage.According to the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA), the local multiplier effect means that independent businesses create jobs and local wealth through direct, indirect and induced impacts. The money these locally owned businesses earn is typically invested back into your town and community, further supporting the economy. In several studies by Civic Economies, results on average found that 48% of each purchase with an independent business is circulated back into the local economy, compared to less than 14% of purchases from chain stores. So on average, out of a $100 bill, $48 spent at a local independent business stays in town — vs only $14 at a chain retailer.Dollars that are recirculated as secondary local spending will multiply the amount of sales tax revenue generated, which further benefits community development, schools and local services.
Did you know? South Dakota agriculture contributes $500 million per year in tax revenue at the state and local level. [SOURCE: 2019 South Dakota Agriculture Economic Contribution Study, July 2019]