United States Main Agricultural Products
Cereals. – In 1932 arable lands measured 143 million hectares and of these 63.3%, that is, ha. 90,793,000, were used for cereal cultivation which, although widespread throughout the country, is concentrated in the great central plain, between the Ohio valley, the Great Lakes and the Mississippi, then extending westwards into the two Dakota, Nebraska and in Kansas. Among the cereals holds the first place the corn which was reserved in 1932 ha. 43,976,000, that is 46.9% of the cereal area, and whose cultivation, widespread throughout the eastern territory, is particularly intense in the Corn Belt. The total product, in the five-year period 1925-29, reached an average of 678,478,000 quintals, equal to 59.2% of world production; the average harvest per ha. it is around 15-16 quintals, slightly lower than the average Italian income.
Cheese production has also been increasing and is particularly concentrated in Wisconsin, Michigan and, to a lesser extent, California and Oregon. But the butter and cheese produced in the area are not sufficient for the needs and it is imported from the countries of Europe (Italy and Switzerland), Argentina and Canada.
The second farming region embraces the cultivated plains of central N., where the animals are kept and fattened with agricultural products and especially with corn, and the western prairies, where instead the extensive breeding of immense wandering herds is still practiced. under the guard of the famous cowboys. Here, too, the primitive breed was improved to obtain richer types of meat that are ready for slaughter between two and three years of age. In fact, recently baby – beefs were introduced, ie animals to be slaughtered at about 18 months, with which you can have tender meats and a quick capital gain. The richest states in animals are: Illinois, Minnesota, South Dakota, Missouri, and in particular Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas, which with their 14 million heads alone own more than one fifth of the total number of cattle.
Another very rich state is Texas, where six million cattle lived in 1930; but extensive farming still prevails in it.
In addition to providing directly for the consumption of the residents of the countryside and smaller towns, this region supplies the raw material to the large meat industries which, thanks to the use of refrigerated wagons and the most perfected methods of preservation, has been able to be concentrated in some districts. specialized. The first of these fortunate centers was Cincinnati, but this gave the primacy to Chicago which still holds it today, although other large centers have developed further west and south, namely St Louis, Omaha and Kansas City, to which they follow for importance St Paul, Sioux-City, St Joseph, Fort Wort in Texas, and Denver in Colorado.
Located in the Corn Belt and shared the meat industry has kept the breeding of pigs of which the United States own about a quarter of world heritage. The richest states in pigs are those of the Center North, which in 1930 owned 40.6 million heads out of a total of 56.2 million. The first place goes to Iowa (Pìgstate) with 10 million; followed by Illinois and Nebraska with 4.6 million each, Indiana, Minnesota and Missouri with more than 3 million head.
Impressive is the number of sheep, which in E. they are bred especially for slaughter, and in the west for wool. In 1930 the western states owned 29.5 million sheep out of a total of 56.9 million; but the first place went to Texas with 7.6 million: followed by Montana, California, Idaho, Wyoming and Oregon with figures ranging from 4 to 3 million each.
Minor importance have the horses that are found in greater amounts in the most intensively cultivated regions, where they are used as work animals. The mules, 5.3 million in 1930, are concentrated in the southern states; horses, on the other hand, which are experiencing a constant decline, due to the increasing use of engines to drive agricultural machinery, and have gone from 20.9 million in 1913 to 13.6 million in 1930, are more numerous in the states of the Center North (7 , 8 million head).
The breeding of chickens (378.8 million heads in 1930) and the production of eggs (32.276 million in 1930) are mainly the responsibility of the agricultural states of the Center North which own more than half of the former and supply half of the latter.