Which state leads the United States in production and per capita availability of sweet potatoes?
– North Carolina
Americans are enjoying sweet potatoes more than ever, with average consumption rising from about 4.2 pounds to 7.5 pounds per person, on average, in 2015. To meet this demand, U.S. farmers have increased sweet potato production to record-high levels. Crop production faltered in October 2016 when Hurricane Matthew slammed into North Carolina, the U.S. leader in sweet potato production. Although there was some crop lost, most of the year’s yield was already harvested before the hurricane hit. Market expansions into Canada and the United Kingdom have contributed to a steady rise in sweet potato exports. Source: USDA.gov
North Carolina is a southeastern U.S. state with a landscape ranging from Atlantic Ocean beaches to the Appalachian Mountains. Charlotte, the state’s largest city, is home to the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and museums such as the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The state motto (“First in Flight”) honors the Wright Brothers, who flew their first plane in Kitty Hawk on the Outer Banks, barrier islands lined with popular beaches.