Did you know? In 1933, hybrid corn seeds made up only one-tenth of 1% of the national crop. Within 10 years, that proportion reached 50%, and by 1956, more than 90% of the national corn crop was from hybrid seeds.
Iowa harvested 2.36 billion bushels of corn in 2011, more than the entire U.S. corn harvest of 1935.
That’s just a couple of the fun agricultural facts uncovered in 77 years of historical data now available online from USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). The agency has just completed the digital compilation of data since 1936, which is now easily accessible to anyone with internet access. In the past, this information, published in the annual bulletin Agricultural Statistics, was available in print form only.
“U.S. agriculture continues to progress by learning from our past, which is why it is imperative to have historic data easily available,” said Cynthia Clark, NASS Administrator. “By publishing this information online we are simplifying the research process and further enhancing access to this important and interesting information.”
NASS and its predecessors at USDA have published Agricultural Statistics since 1936. The bulletins are a compilation of data produced by multiple agencies within USDA. Each volume is a one-stop location for annual production, consumption, trade, and price data for all sorts of crops and livestock, as well as farm economics, spending for government programs, and lots of other statistics important to our country’s agricultural system. These volumes detail U.S. farming for much of the 20th century, including the Dust Bowl and World War II.