Indiana Agriculture

Indiana Agriculture

Indiana is primarily an agricultural state. Out of the total land area of 5,550, three quarters are used for agricultural practice. The agricultural sector of Indiana is very large and diverse and contributes a lot towards the state’s economy. Indiana has about 63,000 farms which constitutes a total of 6,230,000 hectares of farmland. The average size of farm land is 96 hectares. In 2001, agriculture had contributed about $ 5.1 billion towards Indiana’s economy out of which $ 3.3 billion was from crop production and the rest $ 1.8 billion is from live stocks rearing. In terms of agriculture, Indiana is ranked in 14th position among all the other states of United States. Around 80% of the farmers in Indiana depend merely on the agricultural practices for the living whereas the rest of the farmers are included in some other occupations other than agriculture. Indiana’s Agriculture includes two main practices.

Indiana Agricultural Products

  • Crop Production

  • Live stock Rearing.

Crop Production

Crop production in Indiana is very successful owing to its fertile soil, suitable climatic conditions and extensive river system. Each year, Indiana receives an average rainfall of 102 cm which makes it sufficient in water availability. The growing period suitable for agriculture extends to about 170 days. The most important plantations are of:

  • Corn: Corn is one of the major crops grown in Indiana. In 1999, about two fifth of the total crop land was grown with corn plants. In 2002, corn production of Indiana was estimated as about 631,620,000 bushels. In terms of corn production, Indiana is ranked 5th among all the states of United States. Most of the income through corn is obtained through its sale. The major portion of the cultivated corn is used as animal feed. Corn is also an important raw material of the ethanol industry where it is used for the production of burning fuels for car.

  • Soy Beans: The Soy beans are also most significant crop grown in Indiana. In 2002, an estimated amount of 235,750,000 bushels of soy bean crops were cultivated in Indiana. In terms of soy bean production, Indiana is ranked 4th position among all other states of Unites States and it produces about 9.5 % of all the soy beans in United States. Soy bean is one of the major export products of Indiana and thus have contributed a lot to the country’s economy. Many products like soy candles and soy crayons were also developed from soy bean by the Soy bean Board. AS soy bean is a rich source of protein it is also used for feeding the live stock.

  • Sweet Corn: Apart from corn and soy bean, the Indiana is also important for its sweet corns. Every year, about around 6,000 acres of farm land is used for sweet corn cultivation.

  • Other Crop Plants: Other important crop plants grown in Indiana are Wheat, Hay, Spear mint, peppermint etc. In 2002, the total production of spear mint was estimated as around 48,000 lbs and the total production of peppermint was estimated at around 414,000 lbs.

  • Fruits: The most important fruit plants grown in Indiana are apple, water melon, blueberry, peach and blackberry. There are large acres of apple orchards in Indiana which produces the major varieties of apples like golden apple, gala apple, red apple etc. Indiana produces around 6% of the total water melon of Indiana.

  • Vegetable Crops: The important vegetable crops grown in Indiana are tomatoes, potatoes, cucumber, beans etc. Indiana produces about 240,990 tons of tomatoes each year and hence ranks 2nd in terms of tomato production.

Live Stock Raising

Live stock rearing is also very prominent in Indiana. The land and environmental conditions of Indiana are very much suitable for live stock rearing and hence has become an important part of Indiana’s economy. The live stock rearing has helped a lot in meeting the Indiana’s strong domestic need for animal products. Apart from merely serving as a food source, it also provides important raw materials for many related industries. The most important live stocks reared in Indiana are:

  • Cattle: Cattle-rearing is an important practice in Indiana and has about 13,000 beef cow operations. The beef from Indiana is of very high quality as they are mostly reared in small scale without the administration of growth hormones. The cattle are also important in terms of dairy production. In Indiana there are around 2,900 dairy farms with about 154,000 milk cows. The most important dairy products of Indiana are milk, cheese, ice cream etc.

  • Poultry: The poultry industry of Indiana is very well developed and is ranked 5th among all other states of United States. In terms of the chicken production, Indiana is ranked in the 2nd position and in terms of egg production, Indiana is ranked in the 3rd position among other nations.  Apart from chicken, Indiana is also the largest producer of duck.

  • Other Live Stocks: The other most important live stocks reared in Indiana are turkey, hog, sheep etc.

Indiana Agricultural Statistics

Top 5 Agriculture Commodities
Commodity Value of Receipts
Thousand $
Percent of State Total
Farm Receipts
Percent of US Value
1.     Corn 1,533,225 30.0 9.0
2.     Soybeans 1,226,415 24.0 9.6
3.     Hogs 693,444 13.6 5.6
4.     Dairy products 407,813 8.0 1.7
5.     Chicken eggs 258,573 5.1 5.8
All Commodities 5,105,437   2.5


Top 5 Agriculture Exports, Estimates
Commodity Rank Among
Million $
1.     Soybeans and products 4 623.3
2.     Feed grains and products 6 454.4
3.     Other 11 197.1
4.     Live animals and meat 15 107.8
5.     Poultry and products 17 38.0
Overall 9 1,546.0
Top 5 Counties in Agricultural Sales
Counties Percent of State's
Total Receipts
Million $
1.     Kosciusko 2.8 146.1
2.     Dubois 2.8 144.2
3.     Elkhart 2.4 124.0
4.     White 2.3 118.6
5.     Daviess 2.3 117.9
State Total   5,230.0