Farm Progress

U.S. farmers plant highest corn acreage since 1937

Karen McMahon 2, Editor

June 29, 2012

2 Min Read

If you think you’re seeing more corn acres planted this year than ever, you are close to being right. The corn acreage planted this year of 96.4 million acres is the highest since 1937, according to USDA’s June 29 crop report. In 1937, 97.2 million acres were planted.

The 2012 corn acreage is 5% up from 2011, which was 91.9 million acres. Growers expect to harvest 88.9 million acres, which is up 6% from last year, USDA reported.

Iowa remains the leader in corn acres with 14 million planted this year, which is down slightly from last year’s acreage of 14.1 million. Illinois comes in second with 13 million acres this year. Last year, Illinois planted 12.6 million acres. Nebraska is third with 9.9 million acres, up slightly from last year’s 9.85 million acres.

Minnesota ranks fourth in corn production with 8.7 million acres, up from 8.1 million planted in 2011. Indiana increased corn acres from 5.9 million last year to 6.2 million this year. Wisconsin has 4.35 million planted acres compared to 4.25 million last year.

Soybean acres up

Another record was almost set with the soybean acres. USDA estimates the 2012 planted soybean acreage at 76.1 million acres, which is the third largest on record and 1% larger than last year. Growers in New York, North Dakota and Pennsylvania planted a record number of acres for their states.

Iowa increased soybean acres from 9.35 million last year to 9.5 million this year. Indiana dropped slightly from 8.9 million acres last year to 8.6 million acres this year. And the third largest soybean acreage in Minnesota with 7 million acres is down slightly from 2011 with 7.1 million acres.

Missouri has 5.3 million planted acres, which is nearly the same as last year’s acreage of 5.35 million. Nebraska increased soybean acres from 4.9 million in 2011 to 5.1 million this year. And Indiana with 5 million acres is down from last year’s total of 5.3 million acres.

Wheat acres up 3%

Total wheat acres are estimated at 56 million, up 3% from 2011. The number of planted winter wheat acres estimated at 41.8 million is up 3% from last year. The most popular winter wheat is hard red wheat, which was planted on 30 million acres. Growers planted 8.3 million acres of soft red winter and another 3.5 million acres of white winter wheat.

Planted spring wheat is estimated at 12 million acres, which is down 3% from last year. Hard red spring wheat acres totaled 11.4 million acres and durum totaled 2.2 million acres.

To see the full report, go to download the full report at

About the Author(s)

Karen McMahon 2


Karen McMahon has been editor of Farm Industry News since 2000. She joined the staff in 1998 as senior editor and previously worked on the company’s National Hog Farmer magazine.

Karen grew up on a crop and livestock farm outside of LeMars, IA, and earned her journalism degree from South Dakota State University. After college, she worked on the local newspaper as farm editor and later started writing for various livestock and crop magazines.

She has written extensively about trends and technology related to corn and soybean production, the equipment needed for row-crop farming, and livestock production.   

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