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The San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce is an independent business advocacy organization that is not affiliated with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce or any other Chamber of Commerce.

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San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce Visitors Center
1039 Chorro Street
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Telephone: 805.781.2777
Fax: 805.543.1255
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2012 Community Economic Profile

for the City of San Luis Obispo
with additional information about SLO County

Location
The city of San Luis Obispo, incorporated February 16, 1856, is located 200 miles north of Los Angeles and 235 miles south of San Francisco; it is 10.7 square miles, at an elevation of 315 feet, the city is 35° N latitude and 120° W longitude. The county of San Luis Obispo is 3,316 square miles in area. San Luis Obispo is California’s 23rd largest county by population.  (Source: SLO County Economic Development)

City Climate
Average temperatures for San Luis Obispo city:

Period Minimum Minimum (°F) Maximum (°F) Rain (inches)
January   44 61 4.95”
April 47 66 1.39”
July 55 76 0.02”
October  52 74 0.93”

August is the average warmest month
Highest recorded temperature was 112.5°F in 2010
December is the average coolest month
Lowest recorded temperature was 12°F in 1987
The maximum average precipitation occurs in February
On average there are 30-40 rainy days
Prevailing winds direction is northeast; mean hourly speed is 7 mph

(Source: Weatherchannel.com)

County Agriculture
The agricultural industry in San Luis Obispo is a crucial part of the local economy. It provides employment and income directly for those in agriculture, and it helps drive growth in the tourism industry, which in turn generates further economic activity and consumer spending. Total crop values increased 14% from $623 million in 2009 to $713 million in 2010, a new historical peak. Fresh strawberries lead this increase. Except for vegetable products, all of the main product categories saw gains in crop values for 2010. Wine grapes are performing well, with red varieties leading the way.

According to the California Employment Development Department, farm employment in San Luis Obispo County decreased 3.0% from August 2010 to August 2011. Despite farming employment declines, California's 2011 agricultural exports increased 17% in comparison to the same period (January to August) in 2010.

San Luis Obispo County
Leading Agriculture Production in Dollars

Crop 

2011 Ranking

Dollar Amount 

2010 Ranking

Grapes, Wine

1

$173,558,000

1

Strawberries

2

$123,542,000

2

Broccoli

3

$55,830,000

3

Cattle and Calves

4

$53,374,000

4

Avocados

5

$35,862,000

NR

Vegetable Transplants

6

$33,460,000

5

Cut Flowers

7

$23,313,000

7

Indoor Decorative

8

$23,289,000

8

Head Lettuce

9

$18,454,000

6

Napa Cabbage

10

$14,064,000

UR

Wineries
Picturesque San Luis Obispo County boasts two distinct wine country regions: San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles regions, attracts worldwide acclaim for their wines. Many of the 200+ wineries welcome visitors into their tasting rooms for a chance to wine taste.

The San Luis Obispo wine region offers a cool microclimate and marine sediments that combine to produce the most highly regarded, rich, buttery Chardonnay grapes in California wine country. The long, hot summers and chalk, limestone hillsides of the northern Paso Robles wine country combine to yield award-winning red wines. Plan your wine country vacation around the spectacular California Central Coast of San Luis Obispo County. Our mild Mediterranean climate is perfect for year-round wine tasting and wine country tours.

Top Wine Grapes

Value ($ Thousands)

Cabernet Sauvignon

$56,763

Merlot

$24,475

Chardonnay

$23,078

Syrah

$13,391

Zinfandel

$11,600

Pinot Noir

$9,005

Sauvignon Blanc

$5,560

(Source: 2011 Central Coast Economic Forecast Report)

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