From Fields to Overseas Markets: Mapping U.S. State Agricultural Exports

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Agricultural exports continue to play an important role in the U.S. economy. Every state contributes to the total of American agricultural exports through a mixture of different products. Due to the wide variety of climate and soil in the United States, different regions grow and export specific crops (although, not mutually exclusive):

Midwest (Corn/Soybean Belt): oilseed and grain products
West Coast (Washington, California, and Oregon): fruits, nuts, vegetables, and manufactured foods
Great Plains (Texas through Montana): wheat, cotton, and cattle
Southeast: cotton, peanuts, rice, pork, poultry, peaches, oranges
East Coast: fruits and vegetables, other plant products 5/, poultry, and manufactured foods
Mountain States (Colorado, Utah, and Idaho): potatoes, cattle products, and wheat

The top producing and exporting agricultural states are California, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, and Nebraska. California is the largest producer and exporter of fruits, vegetables, and wine. Additionally, California produces tree nuts, which are major export products. In total, California exported $24.7 billion of agricultural products to the world in 2022. California has at least 10 ports, which are used to export agricultural and non-agricultural commodities. Iowa, Illinois, and Minnesota are major producers of corn and soybeans. Those states are strategically located along the Mississippi River, the backbone of the U.S. agricultural export corridor. In 2022, these three states exported a combined $40.2 billion of agricultural products to the world. With each state playing a role in agricultural trade, the United States continues to be a diverse agricultural exporter and a key player in global food security.

USDA ERS State Agricultural Trade Data
USDA NASS Census 2022

1/ Includes other nonpoultry meats, animal fat, live farm animals, and other animal parts.
2/ Includes turkey meat, eggs, and other fowl products.
3/ Includes processed feeds, fodder, barley, oats, rye, and sorghum.
4/ Includes peanuts (oilstock), other oil crops, corn meal, other oilcake and meal, protein substances, bran, and residues.
5/ Includes sweeteners and products, other horticulture products, planting seeds, cocoa, coffee, and other processed foods.
6/ The sums of all products included in this dataset exclude some processed goods, such as distilled spirits, beer, and ethanol, etc., which account for about 4 percent of total recorded agricultural exports.

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