A. U.S. Corn Production

1. U.S. Average Production and Yields

  • According to the November 2016 United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report, average U.S. corn yield for the 2016 crop is projected to be 11.0 mt/ha (175.3 bu/ac). This is 0.4 mt/ha (6.9 bu/ac) higher than the average yield for the 2015 corn crop and the highest average yield on record.

  • The number of hectares harvested in 2016 is projected to be 35.1 million (86.8 mil ac). This is 2.4 mil ha (6.1 mil ac) more than in 2015. The projected 35.1 mil ha harvested in 2016 ranks third over the last 80 years and third-highest in the past 10 years.

  • While 2016 saw the third-highest number of harvested hectares in the past decade, the 2016 crop also experienced the highest average yield on record, thereby producing a crop estimated to be the largest U.S. corn crop on record at 386.8 mmt (15,226 mil bu). This crop was about 41.3 mmt (1,625 mil bu) larger than 2015’s crop (345.5 mmt or 13,601 mil bu).

ASD and State-Level Production

The geographic areas included in the 2016/2017 Corn Harvest Quality Report encompass the highest corn-producing areas in the United States. This can be seen on the map showing projected 2016 corn production by USDA Agricultural Statistical District (ASD).

Relative to the corn crop produced in 2015, the larger 2016 crop was driven by higher production in 10 of the 12 key corn-producing states. The largest increase in production levels occurred in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, and North Dakota. Kentucky produced about the same amount of corn in 2016 as in 2015, while there was slightly lower production in South Dakota in 2016 than in 2015.

The U.S. Corn Production table summarizes the differences in both quantity (mmt) and percentages between 2015 and projected 2016 corn production for each state. Also included is an indication of the relative changes in harvested acres and yield between 2015 and projected 2016. The green bar indicates a relative increase and the red bar indicates a relative decrease from 2015 to projected 2016. This illustrates that harvested acres were largely unchanged to higher. Yield changes were mixed, with large increases (greater than 10%) in Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, and North Dakota, and slight decreases in only two states – Kentucky and South Dakota.

[1] mt - metric ton; mmt - million metric tons; ha - hectare; bu - bushel; mil bu - million bushels; ac - acre.