Pumpkin: Background & Statistics

Dan Tree, nut & vine crops

Pumpkin production is widely dispersed throughout the United States, with crop conditions varying greatly by region. In 2015, U.S. farmers produced 753.8 million pounds of pumpkins. Production dropped over 40 percent from 2014 largely due to a drop in acreage planted and harvested in Illinois. Despite this decline, Illinois remained the leading producer of pumpkins by acreage, with almost 80 percent of acres typically devoted to production for pie filling or other processing uses. Nationally, decreased pumpkin production drove down totals for per capita utilization which declined to 3.1 lbs. per person in 2015.

Supplies from the remaining top five States are targeted toward the seasonal fresh market for ornamental uses and for home processing. California emerged in 2015 as the top pumpkin producer in terms of value of production. California acreage continues to expand, yields exceed those of other states, and annual average prices have continued to strengthen since 2005. Initial reports for 2016 pumpkin production are favorable with growers producing mainly jack-o’-lantern types with additional specialty varieties. For the first week of September 2016, average advertised retail prices were down compared to the same period last year. Demand for specialty pumpkins continues to expand as consumers look for new and interesting varieties. Specialty varieties with wholesale prices reported to date in 2016 include Big Mack, Blue, Cinderella, Fairytale, White Howden, Knuckle Head, and heirloom varieties.

(Wholesale and retail advertised prices will continue to be updated during the 2016 fall season as they become available.)


U.S. pumpkin planted area, total in top six States:

  • 2013: 52,600 acres (20,400 in Illinois, 6,600 in Michigan)
  • 2014: 50,900 acres (20,100 in Illinois, 6,700 in Ohio)
  • 2015: 43,200 acres (15,000 in Illinois, 6,400 in Ohio)

U.S. farm value of pumpkin production, total in top six States:

  • 2013: $149 million ($47m in Illinois, $30m in California)
  • 2014: $143 million ($47m in Illinois, $26m in California)
  • 2015: $90 million ($26m in California, $15m in Pennsylvania)

U.S. pumpkin production, top six States, 2015:

  • Illinois: 317.9 million pounds
  • California: 146.4 million pounds
  • Ohio: 84.2 million pounds
  • Pennsylvania: 79.4 million pounds
  • Michigan: 77.0 million pounds
  • New York: 48.9 million pounds

U.S. pumpkin yield per acre, top six States, 2015:

  • California: 24,000 pounds
  • Illinois: 21,500 pounds
  • Michigan: 15,500 pounds
  • Ohio: 15,500 pounds
  • Pennsylvania: 15,500
  • New York: 11,000 pounds
Share of U.S. pumpkin area harvested for fresh and processing markets, in top six States, 2012
Top six States Fresh (percent) Processing (percent)
Illinois 23 77
Michigan 88 12
New York 96 4
Ohio 97 3
Pennsylvania 97 3
California 99 1

U.S. per capita use of pumpkins:

  • 2013: 4.67 pounds
  • 2014: 5.39 pounds
  • 2015: 3.12 pounds


U.S. farm price for pumpkins:

  • 2013 average: 13.2 cents per pound
  • 2014 average: 11.0 cents per pound
  • 2015 average: 12.0 cents per pound

U.S. wholesale price for pumpkins, weekly average of all quoted markets (excluding organic) for the listed type in 24” bins (.pdf)


U.S. advertised retail price per pumpkin
Date 2016 2015
September, 2nd Week $4.45 $5.91
September, 3rd Week $4.47 $4.79
September, 4th Week $4.29 $4.78
September, 5th Week $4.21 $3.90
October, 1st Week $3.95
October, 2nd Week $4.32
October, 3rd Week $4.41
October, 4th Week $4.41

For planted area, production, yield, farm value and farm prices: USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), Vegetables. Data provided only for top six States. According to the 2012 U.S. Census of Agriculture, these States accounted for approximately 50 percent of U.S. total pumpkin area.

For State share of area harvested: USDA, NASS, 2012 U.S. Census of Agriculture.

For per capita use: USDA, Economic Research Service (ERS) Vegetable and Pulses Yearbook 2016.

For wholesale and retail prices: USDA, Agricultural Marketing Service, Fruit and Vegetable Market News.