The Ideal Location for
Your Agriculture Business

Providing valuable support for an industry
with growth potential

Agri-tech businesses have a large presence in Sumter County and are set to grow even larger, with over 800 agricultural-based businesses residing in the county. Brite Leaf Citrus Nursery and Agromillora Florida are two examples of companies in Sumter County that are utilizing the advanced research and development opportunities at the University of Florida to further innovate the citrus industry and help combat citrus greening. These businesses, as well as others in the county, are capitalizing on the county’s unique proximity to a multi-university network for agricultural research, studies, innovation and graduates.

Business Data



Location: Central, FL; 58 miles northeast of Tampa and 49 miles west of Orlando
Land Area: 545 sq. miles (1,411 sq. kms)
Population: 118,891 (2015, USCB)
Growth Rate: 27.3% (third fastest growing county in U.S. 2010 – 2015, USCB)

Industry Data

Population: 2,815,800, 1 hour drive, (EMSI, 2016)
Workforce: 1,585,955, 1 hour drive, (EMSI, 2016)
Unemployment: 6.6% (August 2016, CareerSource)
Average Annual Wage: $34,706 (2016, FOEDR)
Median Household Income: $48,493 (2015, USCB)–>

Industry Stats (Source

201220172022% Change
Number of Farms1,3671,3071,117-15%
Land in Farms183,246 acres177,071 acres146,165 acres-17%
Average Size of Farms134 acres135 acres131 acres-3%
Market Value of All Products Sold$42,066,000$54,457,000$86,465,000+59%
 — Crop Sales $24,775,000 $20,008,000 $48,531,000+142%
 — Livestock Sales $17,291,000 $34,449,000 $37,933,000+10%
 — Average Per Farm $30,773 $41,665 $77,408+86%


Highways: I-75; Florida Turnpike; US Hwy 301; SR 44, SR 48, SR 50
Airports: Orlando Intl. (1 hr.), Tampa Intl. (1 hr.) and Leeburg Regional Airport (20 mins.)
Seaports: Deepwater Ports of Tampa (1 hr), Manatee (1.5 hrs.), Jacksonville (2.5 hrs.), Canaveral (2 hrs.) and Miami (4 hrs.)
Rail Service: Industrial rail service by CSX Transportation’s main Eastern Seaboard freight line (S-Line)


● School System academically high performing since 2010
● Lake Sumter State College partners with Sumter County Schools and UCF to offer Bachelor’s degrees, vocational certificates and technology diplomas
● Regional campuses of UCF located nearby in Leesburg and Clermont
● USF and UF, both top national research institutions, are an hour away in Tampa and Gainesville respectively

Sumter County Agricultural Alliance

The Sumter County Agricultural Alliance exists to provide the industry with the best information on the opportunities available in Sumter County. Whether you’re a small operation or a nationally recognized producer… they are a resource to serve and advocate on your behalf.

– Education: UF/IFAS
– Resources Directory: Nurseries
Sales Tax Exemption Information

For more information, please call 352-689-4400 or email us.

Soil & Water Conservation District

The Sumter County, FL Soil & Water District has the mission of coordinating with state and regional partners in helping to protect and restore the water and soil resources of our county.

For more information, please call 352-689-4400 or email us.


Sumter County represents a distribution hub unique in the state, strategically located at the crossroads of I-75, Florida’s Turnpike and CSX Rail’s main freight line.


Interstate 75 and Florida’s Turnpike
US Highway 301 and US Highway 27
State Roads 44, 48 and SR 50


Orlando International (1 hour)
Tampa International (1 hour)
Leesburg Regional (20 minutes)


Port of Tampa (1 hour)
Port Manatee (1.25 hours)
Port Canaveral (1.75 hours)
Port of Jacksonville (2.5 hours)
Port of Miami (4 hours)

Rail Service

CSX rail is an integral element of the Sumter County transportation hub. CSX’s S-line industrial rail runs the entire north-south length of the county, providing Sumter businesses major distribution advantages.

CSX currently rolls 15 to 25 trains per day through Sumter County, each pulling up to 90 freight cars, serving 23 states over their 21,000 mile rail network.

Market Access and Export Capabilities

While it’s true that Sumter County isn’t located directly on the coast, that’s been little impediment when it comes to our international trade. Interstates, rail lines and nearby ports provide an excellent network of transit points for your products, tools and imports. And as a bonus, our inland location is less susceptible to hurricane damage while also being significantly less expensive than a location directly on the Gulf or Atlantic coasts.

A number of export resources from counseling to financing also exist for distribution businesses in the County.


In an effort to help attract businesses within the targeted industries of manufacturing, distribution, and agriculture, Sumter County has approved and adopted a set of targeted business incentives for companies locating and/or expanding their operations in the County. Even with Sumter County’s advantages of a low and stable tax rate, low debt ratio and proactive business philosophy, you can still enjoy competitive incentives to help make your decision to locate in Sumter County even easier.

Expedited Permitting

Sumter County has forged unique, innovative partnership agreements with its cities and the State of Florida, and gained broad-gauge, fast-track approval processing on “shovel-ready” development sites.

The county’s site and building permit process can run concurrently in some areas submitted for consideration. Site and building permit can be issued within 21 days due to having the correct entitlements to meet certain land and building requirements. (No legislative hearings. Administrative process only.)

Industry Incentive

Sumter County encourages research and development (R&D) investments to foster innovation and
economic growth in the county. Sumter County offers a cash incentive for agribusinesses directly
engaged in R&D activities in the Agricultural Sciences industry. This incentive is independent of any state
grant funds received by the business unless otherwise stated in the written agreement between Sumter
County and the business.

Incentive Guidelines:
– This agribusiness incentive applies to businesses performing R&D operations in the county that
are in the Agricultural Sciences industry, as specified by the North American Industry
Classification System (NAICS), and approved by Sumter County Economic Development as a
qualified business.

– A minimum R&D building capital investment of $300,000 to real property located within Sumter
County, Florida is required.

– The cash incentive is calculated as follows:

– The total payout amount for R&D operations is up to 20% of the company’s building
capital investment for that portion of the capital investment where R&D occurs, not to
exceed a maximum of $1,000,000 per year, for a combined total of $3,000,000 over
three years*.

– Payout amounts for this incentive are paid by the county in three equal payments as follows:

1. The first payment is processed on the opening day of the facility in the amount of one third
(1/3) of the incentive.

2. The second payment is made one year after the first payment is made in the amount of
one third (1/3) of the incentive.

3. The third payment is made one year after the second payment is made in the amount of
one third (1/3) of the incentive.

– The industry incentive is limited to three (3) years and the business must reapply each year.

– Proof of investment is required before an incentive payment is made to the business in the form of the Building Permit Application noting the original Declared Value as submitted to Sumter County or verification of square footage of the R&D area once construction is complete if only a Site Plan is submitted. In cases of a Site Plan only, a price per square foot valuation will be agreed upon by both parties and included in the incentive agreement.

– In addition to this incentive, or as a standalone support activity, Sumter County Economic Development will assist eligible agribusinesses in submitting the required documentation to obtain an agricultural classification from the Sumter County Property Appraiser.

* The county’s obligation to provide incentive funding is limited based upon the availability, appropriation, and approval of funds in the county’s budget and subject to the terms of the incentive agreement.

Sumter Strengths

Location, Location, Location

Sumter County is a major, regional transportation hub for Central Florida at the crossroads of Interstate 75, Florida Turnpike’s and CSX’s main freight line, with access to major airports and seaports less than 90 minutes away.


An aggressive local incentive package for targeted industries that includes incentives for manufacturing, distribution and agricultural businesses.

Pro-Business Philosophy

Pro-business county leadership and economic development team with a personal commitment and passion for supporting local businesses.

A Commitment to Business

An Industrial Development Authority whose sole mission is to facilitate business growth and expedite the processing of bonds.

Farm Charts

Product sales chart

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