When considering some Iowa facts for a recent visit from a group of foreign delegates, I put together some facts on Iowa agriculture that are widely known, but the numbers to put with the understanding that Iowa plays a large global agriculture role is what I wanted to provide here.
· If Iowa were a country it would be the 4th largest corn and soybean producer.
· About 3,500 acres of Sweet Corn (human consumption) 13 million acres is grain corn (animal and ethanol consumption).
· Iowa is the largest Hog Producer in the United States, with 12.3 billion pounds of hog production in 2016. One-Third of US Production.
· Iowa is also the largest Egg producer in the United States 13 Billion eggs in 2016.
· 55,875 square miles of land in Iowa 85% is for Agricultural use.
· Number 2 in U.S. Ag Production about $25 billion in all commodity receipts in 2016.
· Based on Iowa’s 7.3% of U.S. all commodity receipts, Iowa exported 11.5 billion dollars of agricultural products in 2016.
All this said, Iowa produces $4 billion dollars above the next closest states (Texas and Nebraska), which is more than most states generate in any given year. Notably, California nearly doubles Iowa’s production. California produces a wider range of high value agricultural products in the form of vegetables, fruit, tree nuts, and dairy products etc., as well as having 3 times as much space to produce on with 163,000 square miles. As referenced above, in land used for agricultural purposes, Iowa is a powerhouse state. However, we don’t want to be competitive as much as we want work together with our fellow agriculturists to continue the tradition of America’s strong ag economy, which is the “breadbasket of the world”.