Top U.S. states based on number of chickens 2018

Iowa had the highest number of chickens of any U.S. state in 2018 with 72.58 million heads. Indiana and Ohio came in second and third place, with around 44 million and 43 million heads respectively. Chickens are one of the most commonly produced livestock in the United States.

Chicken farming

Farming chickens has a distinct advantage over other livestock in that they require relatively little space and minimal initial investment in order to thrive. In the United States, there are two main kinds of farmed chickens: chickens for meat and egg-laying hens. In 2017, there were approximately 504.5 million chickens in the United States.

Poultry consumption

Poultry consumption per capita in the United States is expected to plateau in the coming years and remain at around 111 pounds per year. In 2017, the region that spent the most on poultry per consumer unit was the Western United States at 218 U.S. dollars. In comparison, consumer units in the Midwest only spent about 145 U.S. dollars on poultry in that year. When it comes to processed meat and poultry purchases, American consumers tend to prefer national brands to private label.

Leading 10 U.S. states based on number of chickens in 2018 (in 1,000 heads)*

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Release date

January 2020


United States

Survey time period


Supplementary notes

* Excludes commercial broilers.

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Statistics on "Poultry industry in the U.S."

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