The structure of US agriculture has been shaped towards less but the farms are larger. In the early times of this country, people could make a living on the 160 acres they had received from The Homestead Act of 1862. This act gave families clear titles to 160 acres
if they had lived on it for five years. Though in today's changing world farmers have been forced to increase the sites of their operations or go out of the farming business. The farming business is a way of life to most of those who do it and do not want to quit doing it now but with the off of the farm incomes increasing all of the time it is making farmers change their way of life.
The Agriculture Economics and Agribusiness textbook, sixth addition, says that there are three classifications of farms by economic size. The first classification is the expanding sector .
This sector sales more than $100,000 per year of farm products, it is 16% of the farms in the US. It also produces 80% of all of the farm outputs or products in the US. The farms in this sector produce nearly all of the farm products produced the US but are only contribute to small parts of the farms in the US. The expanding sector of agriculture numbered 271,000 farms in the 1980's. This number increased to 326,000 farms by 1991. The off of the farm income of this sector is only $20,847 per farm. The total income per farm averaged $180,276 per year. This sectors main income comes from farming and very little of its income comes from off of the farm jobs. This sector is growing because there is becoming more big farms that produce most of our food.