Before WWII, most corn was harvested by hand. The first mechanical corn harvester was developed in 1930 by the Gleaner Harvester Combine Corporation. Researchers believe corn was developed by natives in Central America at least 7,000 years ago. It is a domesticated grass, so it is not found in the wild.
Outside of North America, Australia, and New Zealand, “corn” means any cereal crop. Maize is the more formal and internationally recognized name for corn. Maize is an Indian word that means “sacred mother” or “giver of life.”
One bushel of corn contains about 72,800 kernels and weighs 56 pounds. There are more than 3,500 different uses for corn. The starch in corn can be made into plastics, fabrics, adhesives, and other chemical products. 40% of corn is used in ethanol production.
Sign Up for Our Email Newsletter and get ag facts bi-monthly, plus new jobs in agriculture