Despite the proximity to the Houston metro area and lands becoming more and more fragmented into smaller parcels, agriculture continues to be very important in Austin County and a major source of economic stability. Climatic conditions and good soils make the county ideal for growing a variety of crops and livestock species. The area was once known for its cotton production in the early half of the twentieth century and gradually transitioned into an area more conducive for the production of livestock following the second world war and is a trend that continues to this day.

Beef cattle is the number one agricultural commodity produced in the county, with an estimated 40,000 brood cows. Hay and forages make up the number two agricultural commodity grown and sold by producers, as an estimated 37,500 acres are currently grown for hay production. Other commodities grown in the county include Corn, Cotton, Grain Sorghum, Rice, Melons, Pecans, Wine Grapes and other specialty crops. Other livestock species are also produced in the county, such as Horses, Pure Bred Seed Stock Cattle, Sheep, Goats, Swine, Exotic Wildlife and others. The total estimated agricultural income is $88 million.

For questions or answers related to Agriculture & Natural Resources, please contact:

Travis Gonzales
     Travis Gonzales

 County Extension Agent for Ag & Natural Resources


Travis is a native of Austin County graduating from Bellville High School in 2004. While in school Travis was a member of 4-H and FFA where he competed in numerous events including livestock judging and participated in showing pigs at the county and major stock show level. After graduation Travis attended Blinn College receiving an Associate’s degree in Agricultural Science. He also attended Sam Houston State University receiving a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in General Agriculture minoring in Secondary Education with a teaching certificate. Travis is currently a Masters student at Texas A&M University pursuing a Master’s of Science in Agriculture Education. His current research emphasis is in preparation of new county agents and ag teachers to supervise livestock projects. 

Travis is a member of the Vocational Agriculture Teachers Assn of Texas, The Texas County Ag Agents Assn, The Texas 4-H Agents Assn, and the National 4-H Agents Assn.

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