The total number of global crop acres rose by 73 million during the last two years.

Agricultural Economic Insights first observed an uptick in global acreage in 2020. The number of acres had trended sideways because of sluggish commodity prices and profitability from 2014 through 2019. After acres began increasing in 2020, another increase was observed and a record 2.43 billion acres got harvested in 2021. From 2019 to 2021, the total number of acres grew by 3.7 percent, or 73 million acres.

As far as which crops contributed the most to the recent expansion, AEI says look no farther than oilseeds. From 2016 to 2021, soybean production grew by 25 million acres, which accounted for 40 percent of the total acreage increase. By way of comparison, corn acreage expanded by only 15 million acres. AEI says profitability was behind the surge in planted acres. When profits are strong, producers always find ways to bring more acres online.

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