Iowa and California: Agriculture Giants

Ed Kees gave an interactive and entertaining lecture on Wednesday 9/26 as he discussed Iowa and California agriculture.  It was a super informative lecture for me, as I was previously very unaware of the agriculture in both of these states, and just how largely they impact the economy.  The idea that 85% of Iowa’s land mass is dedicated to agriculture is mind-blowing, and I was also surprised to learn that they are the number one producer in corn, pork and eggs.  The fact that Iowa alone produced 12.5 billion eggs last year is hard to wrap my head around. Iowa is a sweet spot for agriculture due to its rich soils and plentiful rainfall. California, on the other hand, has less than ideal rainfall, but makes up for it in its lack of humidity, which makes growing vegetables an easy task and it greatly reduces the risk for disease.  In fact, California ranks number one for the production of multiple vegetables, fruits and nuts. For being a state that only receives about 10 inches of rain per year, it’s amazing to see how productive they really are. California is somewhere around the tenth largest general economy in the world; that in itself is extremely respectable. The adaptations farmers have come up with in order to produce so much are amazing, especially the enormous aqueducts that run through the fields in order to get water to their crops.  Our country depends heavily on the agricultural industries of Iowa and California, and it was interesting to hear all of the incredible facts about both.

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