About 65 percent of treated U.S. crop acres did not meet nitrogen management criteria in 2006

A chart showing U.S. treated crop acres that did not meet nitrogen management criteria.

About 69 percent of U.S. cropland planted with major field crops (barley, corn, cotton, oats, peanuts, sorghum, soybeans, and wheat), or 167 million acres, receives commercial and/or manure nitrogen. Corn accounts for 45 percent of U.S. crop acreage receiving manure and 65 percent of the 8.7 million tons of nitrogen applied by farmers each year. Using data from USDA's Agricultural Resources Management Survey (ARMS), ERS researchers determined the extent to which farms are meeting best management practices regarding the rate, timing, and method used for nitrogen applications. In 2006, only about 35 percent of crop acres receiving nitrogen met all three of the nitrogen management criteria, leaving 65 percent in need of improved management. This chart is found in the September 2011 issue of Amber Waves magazine.

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