Farming the planet: 2. Geographic distribution of crop areas, yields, physiological types, and net primary production in the year 2000
Croplands cover ∼15 million km2 of the planet and provide the bulk of the food and fiber essential to human well-being. Most global land cover data sets from satellites group croplands into just a few categories, thereby excluding information that is critical for answering key questions ranging from biodiversity conservation to food security to biogeochemical cycling. Information about agricultural land use practices like crop selection, yield, and fertilizer use is even more limited. Here we present land use data sets created by combining national, state, and county level census statistics with a recently updated global data set of croplands on a 5 min by 5 min (∼10 km by 10 km) latitude-longitude grid. The resulting land use data sets depict circa the year 2000 the area (harvested) and yield of 175 distinct crops of the world. We aggregate these individual crop maps to produce novel maps of 11 major crop groups, crop net primary production, and four physiologically based crop types: annuals/perennials, herbaceous/shrubs/trees, C3/C4, and leguminous/nonleguminous.