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Southern States Share of Major Crop Bases

For the 2021 program year, the U.S. had a total of 246,601,268 enrolled base acres across 23 covered commodities, ranging from feed and food grains to various major and minor oilseeds and seed cotton.  The 13 Southern States (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia) accounted for 50,459,543 acres or 20 percent of the U.S. total.  

Looking at enrolled crop bases for the 2021 program year, the South accounted for a relatively low percentage of corn and soybean bases (9% and 14%, respectively).  The Southern States accounted for over 90 percent of seed cotton, long grain rice, and peanut base acres, which makes sense as these three commodities are generally grown in warmer climates and are often referred to as “Southern crops”.  While the share of wheat base in the Southern States was only 24 percent of the U.S. total, the 14,734,976 acres of wheat base represented the largest raw number of base acres of any single crop in the 13-state region.

Table 1. Enrolled Base Acres for the 2021 Program Year.

Base AcresCornSoybeansSeed CottonLong Grain RiceWheatGrain SorghumPeanuts
13 Southern States7,996,1877,186,91310,483,8663,487,44014,734,9763,563,1672,355,027
U.S. Total92,307,69752,245,51611,546,3463,790,09561,910,8418,501,7572,404,116
13 States as % of Total9%14%91%92%24%42%98%
Source: USDA/FSA.  Available at:  https://www.fsa.usda.gov/programs-and-services/arcplc_program/arcplc-program-data/index

These seven crops accounted for 49,807,514 of the 13 Southern State total of 50,459,543 base acres (or 98.7 percent), indicating there are very few enrolled base acres of other covered commodities on farms located in the South.

Outlaw, Joe and J. Marc Raulston. “Southern States Share of Major Crop Bases“. Southern Ag Today 1(45.4). November 4, 2021. Permalink

Professor and Extension Economist
Co-Director, The Agricultural and Food Policy Center at Texas A&M

Associate Director, Department of Agricultural Economics
Texas A&M University