Days after taking the unprecedented step of ordering mandatory water-use reductions throughout his state, California Gov. Jerry Brown defended his executive order’s treatment of the state’s agriculture industry and its use of water in an interview with ABC’s “This Week.”

Brown said California’s farms are “providing most of the fruits and vegetables of America,” as well as jobs for the state’s most vulnerable residents. Though agriculture accounts for only 2 percent of California’s economy, it consumes 80 percent of the state’s water, according to the Public Policy Institute of California, a nonpartisan think tank. …

“If you don’t want to produce any food and import it from some other place, of course you could do that,” he said. “But that would displace hundreds of thousands of people and I don’t think it’s needed.”