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Indiana's Diverse Ag Triumphs
Indiana Ag Connection - 02/23/2024

Indiana's agricultural scene is flourishing, revealing a dynamic shift in the heartland's farming narrative. The latest Agriculture Census, a comprehensive study conducted every five years by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, spotlights Indiana as a powerhouse in ag production. The economic value of Hoosier agricultural products skyrocketed to over $18 billion in 2022, marking a remarkable 60% increase from the last census.

Hoosier farmers are not just cultivating the conventional corn and soybeans; they're breaking barriers with unexpected specialties. Indiana proudly holds the top spot nationally in three distinct categories: popcorn, gourds, and ducks. Surpassing 13 million ducks sold in 2022, the state is also the fourth-largest soybean producer and the fifth-largest in corn.

The agricultural diversity continues with Indiana claiming the second-highest pumpkin production in the U.S., emphasizing over 500 farms and 7,000 acres dedicated to this fall favorite. The state ranks third in both spearmint and turkey production, despite grappling with a significant avian flu outbreak in 2022.

Beyond these feats, Indiana secures positions as the fourth-largest peppermint producer, fifth in hog production, and excels in watermelon, egg, maple syrup, and hemp production for CBD products.

While the number of farms has slightly decreased, Indiana's agricultural identity remains robust. With 94,282 farmers, including over 30,000 women actively involved, the industry is evolving. The average age of farmers is 56, with a notable influx of young farmers, over 11,000 under the age of 28, joining the agricultural landscape

As family-operated farms coexist with larger, consolidated ones, Indiana's agricultural tapestry covers 53,599 farms across 14.6 million acres. The average farm size is 272 acres, with 181 spanning over 5,000 acres, reflecting the sector's changing dynamics.

Indiana's agricultural success story is one of resilience, innovation, and diverse achievements, showcasing the state's pivotal role in shaping the nation's farming landscape.

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