The Role of Rail in Agricultural Transportation
Railroad Transportation: An Essential Piece of the U.S. Agricultural Supply Chain
What Agricultural Goods Move by Rail?
Agriculture is the 4th Largest User of Rail by Tonnage
Railroads Support Export and Domestic Markets
Much agricultural production occurs in the interior. Railroads bring this production to market, such as delivering soybeans to the Pacific Northwest or wheat to the Texas Gulf for export. Railroads also supply domestic markets, such as shipping grain to California, Texas, Georgia, North Carolina, and other States for feed. The maps below show rail flows—developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory using the Surface Transportation Board’s confidential Carload Waybill Sample—for corn, wheat, soybeans, all agricultural commodities combined, and all rail freight combined in 2015. For corn, wheat, and soybeans, the maps are paired with county-level production (from USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service) and export volumes (from USDA’s Federal Grain Inspection Service). Click on the arrows to scroll through the maps.