Thanksgiving: Brought To You By Our Nation’s Farmers

Vibrant orange pumpkins growing in field, closeup of closest in dirt. Halloween, Thanksgiving and autumn image

On the heels of harvest, Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on what we’re thankful for and an opportunity to connect over a shared love of food. One of the biggest things we’re thankful for is our farmers. Thank you for your hard work throughout the season to produce some of our favorite Thanksgiving dishes.

Here are just a few of the item’s farmers provide for our Thanksgiving meal:

  1. Cranberries – The U.S. is the number one producer of cranberries—80% of the world’s cranberries are grown in seven states. Wisconsin leads the way, producing 60% of our cranberries. Total production is 841 million pounds/year and 23% are consumed during Thanksgiving week.
  2. Green Beans – About 1.5 billion pounds are produced in the U.S. and Wisconsin leads the way again.
  3. Wheat – The U.S. produces around two billion bushels of wheat which can be used in the bread and rolls we eat. Kansas, Montana, and North Dakota are the top wheat-producing states.
  4. Sweet Potatoes – They aren’t yams, and most aren’t even orange. The U.S., Australia, New Zealand, and Japan are the only countries that primarily eat orange-fleshed varieties. The U.S. produces about 30 million cwt each year. North Carolina, whose state vegetable is the sweet potato, produces about 60% of the sweet potatoes in the U.S.
  5. Mashed potatoes – The U.S. produces nearly 50 million pounds each year. Idaho and Washington produce the most.
  6. Turkey – Minnesota is the top producing state, and the U.S. produces more than 253 million turkeys each year. Over 46 million are eaten on Thanksgiving!
  7. Pumpkins – Fifty million pumpkins are eaten on Thanksgiving and the U.S. produces nearly 1.5 billion pounds each year. Illinois leads the way followed by Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. The largest pumpkin pie made was in New Bremen, OH in 2010 and weighed 3,699 pounds and was 20 feet in diameter.


Thanks to all of you for producing crops for these Thanksgiving delicacies and filling our tables with food every single day. Happy Thanksgiving!