Wisconsin Corn Facts
Wisconsin is one of the top corn producing states in the nation. More than 15,000 farmers grow ‘grain’ corn on approximately three million acres.
Don’t confuse ‘grain’ corn for ‘corn silage’ or ‘sweet corn.’ They are all different, and so are their uses. Grain corn is used for feed for cows, pigs and poultry, ethanol, corn oil and corn starch and other non-food uses. Corn silage is chopped and fed directly to cows. Sweet corn is what you buy at the stores fresh, canned or frozen, or corn on the cob from farmers markets.
In 2015, Wisconsin corn growers harvested 505 million bushels, or 162 bushels per acre. A bushel is 56 pounds. Growers received an average price of $3.56 per bushel, which is below what it costs many farmers to plant, grow and harvest the crop.
The counties with the highest corn production in order are Dane, Grant, Rock, Lafayette and Columbia.
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How Wisconsin Corn Is Used
- Livestock feed: 50% (242.5 million bushels, includes 59 million bushels in distillers grain from ethanol)
- Ethanol: 37% (179.5 million bushels)
- Exports: 10% (48.5 million bushels)
- Food: 3% (14.5 million bushels goes into sweetener, starch and food)
Wisconsin Corn Exports
- The value of corn and corn products exported generated $301.9 million for Wisconsin’s economy in 2014.
- In 2014, Wisconsin’s corn and corn product exports were valued at $214.4 million – 4.1% of Wisconsin’s corn and corn products production value.
- The economic “ripple effects” of these corn and corn products exports created:
- $301.9 million in economic output,
- $66.2 million in gross state product (GSP), and
- 741 full-time equivalent jobs in the state economy.
- For every $1 million in exports of corn, ethanol, DDGS, corn gluten feed and the corn equivalent of meat exports, 3 jobs and $0.3 million of GSP are added within Wisconsin.