Minnesota is known for many things. We’re the land of 10,000 lakes. There are more theater seats per capita here than any place outside of New York City. And we’re a shopping magnet because of the Mall of America. But Minnesota is also known as a great place for raising healthy and wholesome food.
Part of what makes Minnesota well suited for agriculture is our geography. Just over half the state is farm land (27 million acres, or 53 percent). There are fertile prairies in western and northwestern Minnesota that are perfect for sugar beets, potatoes and grains. Corn and soybeans love the longer growing season in the southern half of the state. Pigs and cattle can be found there too. And the southeastern hills that roll into the central region of Minnesota are great for dairy cows and turkeys.
And don’t forget the people! There are nearly 81,000 farm families that work hard each day to raise animals and grow crops to feed people in America and around the world. Those farmers are so good at what they do, they put Minnesota on top when it comes to agriculture. The state is number one in growing sweet corn, peas and turkeys. We’re the number two state for wild rice, and third for soybeans, canola and hogs. You can hear from some of those farmers at www.farmersfeedus.org/mn.
There are also companies all over the state that help get the food from the farm to your table. Minnesota is home to ag greats like Hormel, Land O’ Lakes, General Mills and Gold’n Plump. These companies, along with the farmers, make agriculture an important part of the state’s economy. One in five jobs in Minnesota has a connection to agriculture.
So the next time you head to the grocery store, think about where all those products are coming from. Chances are there’s a Minnesota connection.