Top Selling Products From Each State

October 1, 2016 by Sam Stebbins

Exporting
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The United States exported a total of $2.26 trillion worth of goods and services in 2015, down slightly from a record high of $2.38 trillion in 2014. Exports accounted for an estimated 12.6% of total U.S. GDP and were a significant part of every state’s economy. Without exception, each state in the country exported more than $1 billion of goods in 2015.

To determine the top exported products in each state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed export data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Not all states engage in international trade to the same degree. Washington, for example, exported more than $50 billion worth of airplanes and airplane parts in 2015. Meanwhile, South Dakota’s largest export, pork, was worth just $145 million. In some states, the largest export would not even fall within the top 25 exports in another state.

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Many products exist within a global supply chain and are often developed at their different stages across the country and around the world. An export product’s state of origin is defined as the state that actually ships the product abroad, and not necessarily the state that manufactured the product. Therefore, exports do not always reflect which state the product was originally manufactured or produced.

Click here to see the top selling products in each state.

For example, Louisiana’s second and third largest exports are soybeans and corn. However, a majority of the state’s soybean and corn exports are likely produced in the Midwest, shipped down the Mississippi River, and ultimately exported from the port of New Orleans. So while Louisiana produces little soybean and corn yield on its own, the state still exported $9.04 billion and $4.02 billion worth of soybeans and corn respectively in 2015.

In many states, the most valuable export exists due to the presence of a clustering of companies within a given industry. For example, major automotive companies have footprints in the five states where the top export is either passenger vehicles or auto parts. Notably, one of these states is Michigan, which is home to the headquarters of the Big Three American automakers — Chrysler, General Motors, and Ford. The remaining four states all host manufacturing and assembly plants of major domestic and foreign motor companies.

In many other states, the most valuable export is dictated primarily by the availability of natural resources. Including those states where an agricultural product is the most valuable export, more than a dozen states ship more of a single natural resource abroad than anything else. West Virginia, for example, exports more coal than any other state. It is no coincidence that 43 of 53 counties across the state have economically viable coal reserves.

No state could export anything without global demand and conditions that make international trade economically viable. Demand for lobster in certain Asian countries has picked up in recent years, and partially as a result, China is a primary destination of exports out of Maine.

In many states however, the most common destinations are Canada and Mexico. While this is the result of several factors, including geographic proximity, it is also likely a consequence of international trade agreements. Enacted in 1994, the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, gradually eliminated trade tariffs between Canada, the United States, and Mexico. By some estimates, the total dollar value of trade between the three countries has nearly quadrupled between 1993 and 2016.

To determine the top-selling product in every state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed 2015 export data from the U.S. Census Bureau. The government classifies exports at a granular level, so we combined similar exports into larger categories. For example, dump trucks designed for off-highway use and diesel engine trucks, along with other truck-related goods, were combined into a single export category — trucks.

The largest export as a share of a state’s total exports, a state’s exports as as share of all U.S. exports, and a state’s largest international export markets also came from the Census Bureau. Employment figures by industry in each state came from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages.

These are the top-selling products in each state.

Cars going through Huntsville, Alabama.
Source: Thinkstock

1. Alabama
> Largest export: Cars and passenger vehicles
> 2015 cars and passenger vehicles value: $7.03 billion
> Pct. change in cars and passenger vehicles export value (2014-2015): 5.7%
> Cars and passenger vehicles as share of total state exports: 36.3%

Like neighboring Tennessee and South Carolina, Alabama’s highest-value export is cars and passenger vehicles. Foreign automobile manufacturers have been moving their operations to the Southern U.S. since the 1980s, and today Alabama is home to assembly plants of Toyota, Mercedes-Benz, Honda, and Hyundai. The value of cars and passenger vehicles exported from Alabama rose to $7.03 billion in 2015, a 5.7% increase. Automakers also set a state record in 2015 for producing more than 1 million cars and light-trucks within the year.

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Group of Salmon jumping upstream in river, Alaska
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2. Alaska
> Largest export: Fish
> 2015 fish value: $2.16 billion
> Pct. change in fish export value (2014-2015): 3.5%
> Fish as share of total state exports: 46.3%

Alaska shipped $2.16 billion worth of fish overseas in 2015, 3.5% higher from the year prior and more than any other product in the state. The state also made history in 2015 by recording no commercial fishing deaths for the year. A notoriously dangerous industry, Alaska’s commercial fishing industry claimed 31 lives a year on average in the 1980s, although those numbers have declined in recent years. Fishing is also integral to the state’s economy, accounting for 46.3% of all export value — a larger share than the top export in all but two other states.

Airplane Sky Harbor Airport, Arizona
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3. Arizona
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $2.96 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 32.9%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 13.1%

Like a number of states, Arizona’s highest-value export is airplanes and airplane parts. Arizona shipped $2.96 billion worth of airplanes and airplane parts outside of the country in 2015. Arizona companies also ship a substantial amount of aerospace products within the United States. The state is home to manufacturing plants of Boeing and Northrop Grumman, which frequently receive Department of Defense contracts. DoD spending accounts for roughly 4% of Arizona’s GDP, one of the largest shares of any state.

Airplane Mechanic
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4. Arkansas
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $791.2 million
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): -51.4%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 13.5%

Like a number of states, Arkansas’s primary export is airplanes and airplane parts. However, the total export value of these products is relatively small, at just $791 million annually, the second smallest total of the 14 states for which the top export is aircraft and associated parts. Electrical parts represents Arkansas’s second largest export. Rounding out the state’s top three exports is rice. Arkansas is by far the largest rice producer in the United States, accounting for 49% of all rice grown annually, approximately triple the next largest rice producing state, California.

Los Angele Skyline with Airplane flying over, California
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5. California
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $7.54 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): -13.9%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 4.6%

California exported $7.54 billion worth of airplanes and airplane parts in 2015, more than any other product, yet down from $8.76 billion the year prior. The California aerospace industry is smaller today than it was in its 1980s heyday, when the Cold War heightened defense spending in the U.S. and abroad. According to a report by the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation, 15 of the country’s 25 largest aerospace companies operated out of Southern California at one point during the Cold War.

Nevertheless, California still plays a major role in the national aerospace industry today. The state is the final point of assembly for the Northrop Grumman Global Hawk unmanned aircraft and exports more airplanes and airplane parts than all but two states.

Charolais Beef Cattle, Colorado, USA
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6. Colorado
> Largest export: Beef
> 2015 beef value: $646.0 million
> Pct. change in beef export value (2014-2015): -18.6%
> Beef as share of total state exports: 8.1%

Colorado, which has had a thriving cattle industry longer than it has been a state, today plays a major role in the global beef market. Colorado exported $646 million worth of fresh and frozen beef in 2015, more than any other export. Colorado also exported $172 million worth of hides the same year. Roughly 14,520 Coloradans are employed in the animal slaughtering and processing industry, more than in any other food manufacturing occupation in the state. Colorado’s top trading partners are Canada, Mexico, China, and Japan.

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Airplane, in Bradley Airport, Hartford, Connecticut
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7. Connecticut
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $6.6 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): -1.6%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 43.3%

Airplanes and airplane parts is by far Connecticut’s largest export, accounting for 43.3% of the state’s total goods exported to locations abroad. These goods were valued at $6.6 billion last year, slightly less than the previous year’s value of $6.7 billion. The next largest product, semiconductor manufacturing machine parts, accounted for just 1.8% of the state’s total exports. The state is home to operations of a number of aerospace companies, including United Technologies, the parent company of jet engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney.

medicine bottle in pharmacy store, medication
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8. Delaware
> Largest export: Medication
> 2015 medication value: $1.30 billion
> Pct. change in medication export value (2014-2015): -18.1%
> Medication as share of total state exports: 24.1%

Delaware exported $1.3 billion worth of medication in 2015, more than any other product. With neighboring Pennsylvania and New Jersey exporting $1.1 billion and $552.8 million worth of medication respectively, the Mid Atlantic is a major hub for the pharmaceutical industry. According to the Delaware BioScience Association, these three states are responsible for 80% of all pharmaceuticals produced in the United States.

Delaware is home to the U.S. headquarters of pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, as well as facilities of Johnson & Johnson, Merck, and GlaxoSmithKline.

Miami skyline from the airplane, Florida
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9. Florida
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $4.72 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): -1.7%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 8.8%

Florida shipped $4.72 billion worth of airplanes and airplane parts in 2015, more than any other product and 8.8% of its total export value. Florida is the final point of assembly of the Phenom 100 and Phenom 300, private jets of Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer.

Brazil is Florida’s largest trading partner for airplanes and airplane parts and second largest trade partner overall. Brazil’s economic crisis, which limits the country’s defense and business spending, has already hurt Florida’s aircraft exports. With Brazil spending $1.4 billion less on Florida exports in 2015 than in 2014, the state’s total aircraft export revenue fell 1.7%.

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Atlanta Hartsfield international airport main terminal and parking
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10. Georgia
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $6.42 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 1.3%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 16.6%

Like a number of states, Georgia’s top export is airplane and airplane parts, and the state is in fact one of the largest such exporters in the country. More than $6.4 billion worth of airplane and airplane parts left Georgia for destinations abroad last year. In addition to airplanes and airplane parts, the state exports cars and passenger vehicles, helicopters, and tractors. Combined, vehicles and vehicle parts account for more than one-quarter of the goods that leave the state for other countries.

airplane silhouette Hawaii
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11. Hawaii
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $877.8 million
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 143.9%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 46.3%

Because of Hawaii’s unique location in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, ships and aircraft traveling from the West Coast to Asia and Australia stop there to fuel. While a large share of the goods transported on these vessels were not produced in Hawaii, they are technically counted as exports out of the state. Despite not manufacturing any aircraft on its own, the state exported $878 million worth of airplane and airplane parts in 2015. Similarly, while Hawaii does not produce oil, the state exported $315 million worth of petroleum. Hawaii’s largest trading partner is Australia, followed by Singapore and Japan.

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RAM, memory chip
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12. Idaho
> Largest export: Memory chips
> 2015 memory chips value: $797.8 million
> Pct. change in memory chips export value (2014-2015): -43.3%
> Memory chips as share of total state exports: 18.6%

The product most Americans would immediately associate with Idaho is potatoes. However, a massive share of Idaho’s substantial potato crop never leaves the United States, and because it is landlocked, potatoes may be processed or shipped to other states before they leave to destinations abroad. For this reason, Idaho’s potatoes are only the eighth largest state export, behind, among other goods, silver and oscilloscopes and other spectrum analyzers. The state’s largest export is memory chips, which is not too surprising given that Micron Technologies, a major chip manufacturer, is headquartered in the state capital of Boise.

Petroleum Oil Production Plant Illinois
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13. Illinois
> Largest export: Petroleum
> 2015 petroleum value: $3.49 billion
> Pct. change in petroleum export value (2014-2015): -42.8%
> Petroleum as share of total state exports: 5.5%

Illinois exported $3.49 billion worth of petroleum in 2015, the most of any product and among the most petroleum of any state. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, there are eight crude oil pipelines and nine petroleum product pipelines that cross through Illinois, making the state a major transportation hub for crude oil. Illinois also has the greatest crude oil refining capacity in the Midwest. The price of oil has dropped precipitously in recent years. Partially as a result, the value of Illinois’s petroleum exports declined 42.8% in 2015.

Pills Spilling From Bottle, Medication
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14. Indiana
> Largest export: Medication
> 2015 medication value: $4.45 billion
> Pct. change in medication export value (2014-2015): 3.3%
> Medication as share of total state exports: 13.2%

Indiana exported $4.45 billion worth of medication in 2015, the most of any product and the most medication exports of any state. Pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, which was founded in Indianapolis 140 years ago, today employs over 12,000 residents throughout the state. Indiana is also home to more than 80 other biotech, pharmaceutical, and life science companies. The industry employs nearly 35,000 Indiana residents and accounts for 13.2% of total state exports.

Striking Gold with Corn in Iowa
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15. Iowa
> Largest export: Corn
> 2015 corn value: $977.1 million
> Pct. change in corn export value (2014-2015): -15.8%
> Corn as share of total state exports: 7.5%

Iowa is the largest corn-producing state in the country. The state produces well over $8 billion worth of the crop in a single year, the most of any agricultural product. Nearly $1 billion of Iowa corn was exported in 2015.

About 30% of total state exports go to Canada, while approximately 16% go to Mexico. The state’s next largest exports are pork and tractors. On the whole, agricultural goods and related products account for well over one-third of the state’s total exports in a given year.

KC-135 Stratotankers demonstrate the elephant walk formation.
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16. Kansas
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $2.25 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 8.6%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 21.1%

Kansas exported $2.25 billion worth of airplanes and airplane parts in 2015, or 21.1% of the state’s total export value. Aircraft manufacturing has long held an important role in the Kansas economy. Wichita was the center of aviation innovation in the 1920s and 1930s, with many of the nation’s earliest aircraft pioneers founding enterprises that would ultimately lead to some of today’s industry giants.

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Still a dominant force in the Kansas economy, the aerospace product and parts manufacturing industry employs approximately 60,000 workers throughout the state and includes facilities of major aircraft manufacturers such as Airbus, Boeing, and Bombardier Aerospace, among many others.

Front view of a corporate jet at sunset, Airplane, Kentucky
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17. Kentucky
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $8.65 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 11.9%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 30.8%

Like a number of U.S. states, airplanes and airplane parts is Kentucky’s largest export, accounting for more than 30% of the state’s exports. About one-quarter of these exports go to Canada, with the United Kingdom as the next largest recipient.

The birthplace of bourbon, whiskey is another major export out of the state. Kentucky is home to famous brands such as Jim Beam and Evan Williams.

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louisiana-petroleum-manufacturing-offshore-oil-rig
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18. Louisiana
> Largest export: Petroleum
> 2015 petroleum value: $15.66 billion
> Pct. change in petroleum export value (2014-2015): -37.1%
> Petroleum as share of total state exports: 31.8%

Though crude oil production in Louisiana is well below its 1970 peak, petroleum is the state’s biggest export by a wide margin. The Bayou State exported some $15.7 billion worth of petroleum in 2015, or nearly 32% of the state’s total exports.

While petroleum drilling has been an integral part of the state’s economy for decades, the industry has suffered some major setbacks in recent years. Hurricane Katrina damaged offshore rigs in 2005, curbing extraction for months. In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil platform exploded, killing 11 workers and spilling millions of barrels of oil into the Gulf. With oil prices down considerably in recent years, the total value of petroleum exports out of Louisiana were 37.1% lower in 2015 than they were in 2014.

Three Lobsters Maine
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19. Maine
> Largest export: Lobster
> 2015 lobster value: $0.33 billion
> Pct. change in lobster export value (2014-2015): -5.1%
> Lobster as share of total state exports: 12.2%

Lobster, the most iconic food in Maine, accounts for more than 12% of the total value of goods exported from the northern New England state. While nearly half of Maine’s total exports, including lobster, ends up in Canada, demand from Asian countries, China in particular, is surging. As recently as 2010, Maine exported only $100,000 worth of lobster to China. By 2015, the state exported nearly $26 million in lobster to the Chinese. Maine is one of only six states where the largest export is a food product.

Drawbridge Maryland Cars
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20. Maryland
> Largest export: Cars and passenger vehicles
> 2015 cars and passenger vehicles value: $1.02 billion
> Pct. change in cars and passenger vehicles export value (2014-2015): -53.3%
> Cars and passenger vehicles as share of total state exports: 10.2%

Maryland exports a wide variety of products — the state’s top 25 exported goods account for less than half of the state’s total exports of $10 billion. The state’s largest export is cars and passenger vehicles followed by airplanes and airplane parts, at 10.2% and 5.8% of total exports, respectively. Canada is the largest recipient of goods from the state, followed by Saudi Arabia.

Medical Instruments
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21. Massachusetts
> Largest export: Medical instruments
> 2015 medical instruments value: $1.05 billion
> Pct. change in medical instruments export value (2014-2015): -0.2%
> Medical instruments as share of total state exports: 4.2%

Massachusetts exported $1.05 billion worth of medical instruments in 2015, more than any other product. Massachusetts ships many different products overseas, and no one industry dominates the state’s export economy. Medical instruments accounted for 4.2% of the state’s total exports, followed by semiconductor manufacturing machines and medical needles, which accounted for 4.1% and 4.0% of exports, respectively. The medical device industry employs roughly 22,000 Massachusetts residents, and employment in the industry may increase in the near future as the world’s aging population requires more medical care.

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Automobile Parts
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22. Michigan
> Largest export: Automobile parts
> 2015 automobile parts value: $10.28 billion
> Pct. change in automobile parts export value (2014-2015): 3.8%
> Automobile parts as share of total state exports: 19.3%

Home to Detroit, a city with a name often synonymous with the American auto industry, Michigan’s most valuable export is automobile parts. The state is home to the headquarters of the Big Three — Chrysler, General Motors, and Ford — with the latter two among the five largest automakers in the world by total output.

Commercial vehicle parts and passenger vehicles are the state’s next two biggest exports, each accounting for roughly a 10th of all annual export revenue. Including the nearly $10.3 billion in export revenue from auto parts, all automotive related exports out of Michigan are worth well over $20 billion.

Syringe, Medical Needle
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23. Minnesota
> Largest export: Medical needles
> 2015 medical needles value: $864.1 million
> Pct. change in medical needles export value (2014-2015): -1.2%
> Medical needles as share of total state exports: 4.3%

Minnesota’s exports are relatively diversified with no single commodity or product accounting for more than 5% of the total goods that leave the state for other countries. Minnesota’s largest export, medical needles, accounts for about $864 million of the state’s approximately $20 billion in total annual exports.

Medical needles, x-ray components, and medical instruments are all among the state’s top 25 internationally bound products. In 2014, UltiMed, Inc., which manufactures a variety of medical injection devices including needles, moved to Excelsior, Minnesota, which is located about 20 miles from downtown Minneapolis.

Petroleum Refinery and Tanker, Mississippi
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24. Mississippi
> Largest export: Petroleum
> 2015 petroleum value: $3.20 billion
> Pct. change in petroleum export value (2014-2015): -17.1%
> Petroleum as share of total state exports: 29.7%

Mississippi exported $3.2 billion worth of petroleum in 2015, more than any other product. Located along the Gulf Coast, Mississippi has access to both offshore oil and Central and South American trade through its three ports on the Gulf. Mexico, Panama, and Guatemala are among the state’s largest export markets.

The price of oil around the world dropped in 2014 and 2015, likely contributing to a marked decrease in the total value of petroleum exported from the U.S. Mississippi’s petroleum export value was 17.1% lower in 2015 than in 2014, a nearly $700 million difference.

Commercial Vehicle Parts
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25. Missouri
> Largest export: Commercial vehicle parts
> 2015 commercial vehicle parts value: $1.24 billion
> Pct. change in commercial vehicle parts export value (2014-2015): -19.0%
> Commercial vehicle parts as share of total state exports: 9.1%

Already attractive to manufacturers due to its central location, with relatively easy access to both coasts as well as Canada and Mexico, Missouri also has the fourth lowest corporate income tax rate in the country. Partially as a result, a number of automakers, including Buick, Chevrolet, GMC, and Ford, have production facilities in the state. Ford’s plant in Kansas City is one of the company’s largest.

With a multitude of automotive plants, commercial vehicle parts is Missouri’s number one export, accounting for 9.1 % of the state’s total export value.

Raw Copper Ore
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26. Montana
> Largest export: Copper oxide
> 2015 copper oxide value: $147.1 million
> Pct. change in copper oxide export value (2014-2015): 20.2%
> Copper oxide as share of total state exports: 10.6%

Montana is one of the smallest exporters in the U.S. The total goods leaving the state to other countries amounted to less than $1.4 billion in 2015. Texas’s 2015 exports were 326 times larger than Montana’s, and only its neighbor, Wyoming, exported less. The state’s top two exports — copper oxide, and coal — are mined resources.

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Cattle in a Nebraska Feedlot in Summer, Beef
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27. Nebraska
> Largest export: Beef
> 2015 beef value: $966.6 million
> Pct. change in beef export value (2014-2015): -12.2%
> Beef as share of total state exports: 14.7%

Nebraska’s economy relies heavily on agriculture. A major producer of corn, grain, and soybeans, Nebraska is most notable for cattle farming. The state produced 7.5 billion pounds of commercial red meat in 2015. Much of that was likely sold abroad.

Beef accounts for nearly 15% of Nebraska’s total exports. Roughly $1 billion worth of Nebraska beef is shipped to foreign countries. While Canada and Mexico are the state’s most common export destinations, roughly a fifth of all exports out of Nebraska goes to Japan and China. The state’s second largest export is hides, worth nearly half a billion dollars in export value.

Molten Liquid Gold, Nevada
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28. Nevada
> Largest export: Gold
> 2015 gold value: $3.94 billion
> Pct. change in gold export value (2014-2015): 40.8%
> Gold as share of total state exports: 45.5%

Nevada shipped $3.94 billion worth of gold abroad in 2015, 45.5% of the state’s total export value. The gold industry has always been central to the Nevada economy, even before the state joined the Union. The first gold rush in the state occurred as early as 1849. The discovery of silver a decade later brought more prospectors to the state, and the resulting population boom led to Nevada gaining statehood in 1864.

Today, Nevada produces an estimated 73% of the nation’s gold. Nevada’s largest export market is Switzerland, which refines roughly two-thirds of the world’s gold — the Swiss franc currency is backed by gold reserves.

Two woman at cafe, cell phone
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29. New Hampshire
> Largest export: Cell phones
> 2015 cell phones value: $287.6 million
> Pct. change in cell phones export value (2014-2015): -42.8%
> Cell phones as share of total state exports: 7.2%

New Hampshire’s export value of about $4 billion in 2015 was 10th lowest of all states. Telecommunications and other electronic products make up a significant share of the goods shipped abroad from the state, with products related to phones or office equipment such as printers and copiers making up a bulk of the top exports. The state’s biggest export in 2015, coming to nearly $290 million, is cell phones.

Not surprisingly, the most common foreign destination for goods from New Hampshire is Canada, a country with which the state shares a small border.

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Port Newark, Petroleum, New Jersey
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30. New Jersey
> Largest export: Petroleum
> 2015 petroleum value: $1.53 billion
> Pct. change in petroleum export value (2014-2015): -53.1%
> Petroleum as share of total state exports: 4.8%

While New Jersey does not produce any crude oil, it does operate three oil refineries. New Jersey is also the endpoint of the Colonial Pipeline, the largest petroleum product pipeline in the country. New Jersey exported $1.53 billion worth of petroleum in 2015, making it the state’s largest export.

The price of oil worldwide dropped in 2014 and 2015, the dollar value of petroleum exports from most states depreciated. New Jersey’s petroleum export value was 53.1% lower in 2015 than in 2014, or $1.7 billion less.

Installation of computer processor in the socket
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31. New Mexico
> Largest export: Processors
> 2015 processors value: $1.08 billion
> Pct. change in processors export value (2014-2015): 29.5%
> Processors as share of total state exports: 28.7%

New Mexico’s top export is computer processors, accounting for more than 28%. The majority of the state’s total exports end up in either Mexico or Israel.

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Many of the processors shipped out of New Mexico are likely Intel products. The company, which has had a footprint in the state since 1980, is now New Mexico’s largest industrial employer.

Tweezers holding diamond, close-up
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32. New York
> Largest export: Diamonds
> 2015 diamonds value: $12.66 billion
> Pct. change in diamonds export value (2014-2015): -12.2%
> Diamonds as share of total state exports: 15.8%

New York exported nearly $12.7 billion worth of diamonds in 2015, more than any other product and far more diamonds than any other state. A majority of New York’s diamond exports have likely gone through Manhattan’s Diamond District, a block of jewelry shops on 47th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue, which handles a majority of the diamonds that pass through New York City.

The modern Diamond District was formed around World War II, when the Nazi invasion of Belgium forced many of Europe’s most prominent jewelers out of the Antwerp diamond district. Many of them settled in New York City. Today, diamonds account for 15.8% of all New York exports.

Fighter Pilot, Airplane Parts, North Carolina
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33. North Carolina
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $1.79 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 33.6%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 6.0%

Airplanes and airplane parts account for 6% of North Carolina’s total exports, nearly double the total value of medication, the state’s second leading export. Many aircraft manufacturers have a presence in the state. Lockheed Martin, the company behind the F-16 and the F-22 fighter jets among others, has an office in Fort Bragg. Also, major aircraft parts manufacturer UTC Aerospace Systems is headquartered in Charlotte. Exactly one-third of all exports out of the Tarheel State end up in either Canada or Mexico.

Natural Gas flaring from an oil well in North Dakota.
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34. North Dakota
> Largest export: Petroleum
> 2015 petroleum value: $1.44 billion
> Pct. change in petroleum export value (2014-2015): -45.7%
> Petroleum as share of total state exports: 37.3%

Since the discovery of the Parshall Oil Field in 2006, North Dakota’s oil extraction industry has flourished, spurring a massive population boom and increased oil production. The state advanced from the eighth largest oil producer in the United States in 2006 to the second largest in 2013.

In recent years, however, the worldwide drop in oil prices has slowed production in the state. Only about one-fourth of oil rigs that were in operation across North Dakota in 2014 are operational today. The state’s petroleum export value was 45.7% less in 2015 than in the previous year. Nevertheless, at $1.44 billion, petroleum remains the top export in North Dakota.

Airplane Cleveland Ohio
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35. Ohio
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $4.94 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 12.3%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 9.7%

Nicknamed the “Birthplace of Aviation,” Ohio has always played a major role in the national aircraft industry. The airplane product and parts manufacturing industry employs more than 35,000 residents across the state, and in 2015 Ohio exported $4.94 billion worth of airplanes and airplane parts.

In addition to commercial manufacturing, Ohio is one of the leading states in aerospace research. The state is home to the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, the NASA Glenn Research Center, and aerospace research centers within the University of Dayton and the University of Cincinnati — the result of a collaboration between the schools and General Electric.

Private plane with blue sky

36. Oklahoma
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $428.7 million
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 11.4%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 8.2%

Aviation and aircraft manufacturing have played a considerable role in Oklahoma’s history. Beginning in WWI, the Oklahoma based Dewey Aeroplane Company built about a dozen fighting aircraft, known as the the Curtiss JN-4D, for the U.S. government. In WWII, plants in Tulsa and outside of Oklahoma City churned out thousands of C-47 Skytrain cargo planes in addition to various bombers and attack aircraft.

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Today, under McDonnell Douglas and Rockwell International, the Douglas plant in Tulsa modifies and makes parts for the F-4 and F-15 fighter jets, the B-1 bomber, and a number of civilian aircraft. Oklahoma exported $428.7 million worth of airplanes and airplane parts in 2015, far more than any other product.

Blue electronic circuit, Processor
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37. Oregon
> Largest export: Processors
> 2015 processors value: $5.41 billion
> Pct. change in processors export value (2014-2015): 16.4%
> Processors as share of total state exports: 26.9%

Oregon exported $5.41 billion worth of processors in 2015, more than any other product and more processors than any other state. Oregon’s technology and semiconductor industry began in the 1950s, when Tektronix built a manufacturing facility in a section of the Portland metro area now referred to as the Silicon Forest. In the decades that followed, technology giants such as Intel, Hewlett Packard, Mentor Graphics, and Xerox set up operations in the state, establishing Oregon as a major hub for high-tech manufacturing. Today, nearly 90,000 Oregon residents are employed in the high-tech industry, an estimated 6% of all private sector employment.

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Airplanes Pennsylvania
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38. Pennsylvania
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $1.34 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 8.6%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 3.4%

After declining each year from a four-year high in 2013, coal is no longer Pennsylvania’s most valuable export. During the same time, airplanes and airplane parts exports have increased, reaching $1.3 billion worth in 2015.

Serving international demand as well as domestic, Lockheed Martin has an engineering and manufacturing plant in Archbald, Pennsylvania. Additionally, commercial and military aircraft manufacturing giant Boeing has a facility in Smithfield, Pennsylvania.

Scrap gold Shavings
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39. Rhode Island
> Largest export: Waste and scrap gold
> 2015 waste and scrap gold value: $178.6 million
> Pct. change in waste and scrap gold export value (2014-2015): 11.5%
> Waste and scrap gold as share of total state exports: 8.4%

The only state to have recovered gold as its top export, Rhode Island shipped nearly $179 million worth of waste and scrap gold abroad in 2015. Rhode Island is home to several recycling companies that specialize in e-waste — companies that scavenge gold, silver, and other precious metals from used electronics devices. The scrap gold is then sent to countries such as Canada, Sweden, and Belgium, where it is smelted and resold. Canada is Rhode Island’s largest export market, accounting for roughly one-fourth of the state’s total exports.

Southern neighborhood, South Carolina Cars
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40. South Carolina
> Largest export: Cars and passenger vehicles
> 2015 cars and passenger vehicles value: $9.73 billion
> Pct. change in cars and passenger vehicles export value (2014-2015): 7.9%
> Cars and passenger vehicles as share of total state exports: 31.5%

More than 400 companies in South Carolina manufacture automotive parts, roughly 100 more than eight years ago, according to the South Carolina Department of Commerce. South Carolina’s automobile industry has expanded in recent years, and in 2015 the state exported $9.73 billion worth of cars and passenger vehicles, more than any other U.S. state.

One of the largest car makers in the state is BMW, which exported its 2-millionth South Carolina-built car earlier this year. Other major automobile manufacturers with facilities in the state include Honda, Volvo, and Mercedes-Benz.

The farm pigs, Pork
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41. South Dakota
> Largest export: Pork
> 2015 pork value: $0.14 billion
> Pct. change in pork export value (2014-2015): -26.4%
> Pork as share of total state exports: 10.3%

South Dakota farms raise some 4.0 million head of cattle and 1.4 million pigs. Although the state raises more commercial cattle, it is pork that is the state’s largest export. Pork accounts for more than a 10th of the value of all exports out of South Dakota, while beef accounts for only 2%. The majority of exports out of the state, including pork, end up in Canada or Mexico.

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Downtown Nashville
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42. Tennessee
> Largest export: Cars and passenger vehicles
> 2015 cars and passenger vehicles value: $2.57 billion
> Pct. change in cars and passenger vehicles export value (2014-2015): -2.5%
> Cars and passenger vehicles as share of total state exports: 7.9%

Boasting a favorable corporate tax climate, many automakers have assembly plants in Tennessee. Japanese car manufacturer Nissan has its North American headquarters in Franklin, Tennessee, and a major assembly plant in Smyrna. In addition, General Motors has a manufacturing plant in Spring Hill, and German automaker Volkswagen has manufacturing operations in Chattanooga. All told, more than 100,000 Tennessee residents work in auto manufacturing.
With some of the world’s largest automakers operating in the state, Tennessee’s most valuable export is passenger vehicles. The state shipped $2.6 billion worth of cars in 2015, accounting for nearly 8% of all exports.

Oil well and Storage Tanks, Texas
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43. Texas
> Largest export: Petroleum
> 2015 petroleum value: $48.08 billion
> Pct. change in petroleum export value (2014-2015): -23.9%
> Petroleum as share of total state exports: 19.2%

The largest oil producing state, Texas accounts for 44% of total U.S. crude oil production annually. Texas is also by far the largest oil exporter of any state, having shipped $48.08 billion worth of in 2015.

While the oil and gas extraction industry employs nearly 300,000 Texans, the worldwide drop in oil prices has had a significant negative impact the on the state’s economy. Tens of thousands of Texas oil workers have been laid off since 2014, and the state’s petroleum exports have fallen 23.9%.

Nugget of Gold
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44. Utah
> Largest export: Gold
> 2015 gold value: $5.10 billion
> Pct. change in gold export value (2014-2015): 34.2%
> Gold as share of total state exports: 38.4%

Utah exports more gold than any state other than New York. The state exported $5.1 billion worth of gold in 2015, far more than any other product. While gold remains Utah’s most valuable export, its share of total exports declined dramatically. Compared to 2012, when gold exports accounted for some 76% of Utah’s total exports, gold exports accounted for half that in 2015, or just 38.4%.

Gold’s dramatic decline as a share of Utah’s total exports is likely tied to its fluctuating value. The price of gold hit a five-year low at the end of 2015 after reaching nearly a record high in 2012.

Computer Processor
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45. Vermont
> Largest export: Processors
> 2015 processors value: $1.02 billion
> Pct. change in processors export value (2014-2015): -27.5%
> Processors as share of total state exports: 32.2%

Vermont’s high-tech industry has been expanding over the past two decades, from approximately 1,500 establishments in 1998 to an estimated 2,700 today. While the share of workers employed in the high-tech industry in Vermont is below the national average, the state’s top three exports — processors, circuits, and computer parts — are technology products. Vermont exported $1.02 billion worth of processors in 2015, nearly one-third of the state’s total export revenue.

Random Access Memory (DDR RAM), Memory Chips
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46. Virginia
> Largest export: Memory chips
> 2015 memory chips value: $716.8 million
> Pct. change in memory chips export value (2014-2015): -8.1%
> Memory chips as share of total state exports: 4.0%

In some states, including Virginia, the largest export is the result of the presence of a company or companies. Computer chip manufacturing company Micron has a major facility in Manassas, Virginia. The plant produces a memory chip commonly used in cell phones, computers, and servers. In its fiscal 2015, the company reported $16.2 billion in total revenue, much of which included international sales. Virginia exported $716.8 million worth of memory chips in 2015, the most of any any product.

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Airplane over Seattle, Washington
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47. Washington
> Largest export: Airplanes and airplane parts
> 2015 airplanes and airplane parts value: $51.47 billion
> Pct. change in airplanes and airplane parts export value (2014-2015): 5.7%
> Airplanes and airplane parts as share of total state exports: 59.6%

With $51.47 billion worth of airplanes and airplane part exported in 2015, Washington is by far the leading aircraft manufacturer in the United States. Washington produces an estimated 1,400 aircraft each year, including 95% of all commercial airplanes built in North America. The state is the final point of assembly for Boeings 737, 747, 767, 777, and a majority of 787 Dreamliner planes. It will also be the future production site of the SpaceX satellite system. The aerospace product and parts manufacturing industry currently employs 187,632 Washington residents throughout the state, a figure that is projected to grow in the near future.

West Virginia Coal Company Terminal, Mining
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48. West Virginia
> Largest export: Coal
> 2015 coal value: $1.72 billion
> Pct. change in coal export value (2014-2015): -44.7%
> Coal as share of total state exports: 30.0%

A central part of the state’s economy for more than 100 years, West Virginia exports more coal than any other state. Though the bulk of coal extracted in the state stays in country, West Virginia exported more than $1.7 billion worth in 2015 alone.

More than a third of West Virginia’s exports, including coal, end up in Canada or China. While both countries use coal for energy production, coal accounts for more than three-quarters of China’s energy mix, making it the world’s biggest coal consumer. Canada, on the other hand, has been reducing its coal consumption, citing environmental concerns. Decreasing demand likely contributed to a roughly 45% decrease in coal exports out of West Virginia in 2015.

Computer classroom
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49. Wisconsin
> Largest export: Computers
> 2015 computers value: $430.2 million
> Pct. change in computers export value (2014-2015): 18.9%
> Computers as share of total state exports: 1.9%

Wisconsin has a diverse export economy, and no one product accounts for more than 2% of the state’s total export revenue. Wisconsin exported $430 million worth of computers in 2015, the most of any product. As Wisconsin’s computers exports grew by 18.9% last year, computers overtook tractors to become the state’s top-exported product. In addition to computers, Wisconsin’s other valuable exports include hormones, automobile parts, and airplane parts.

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Close-up of baking soda on spoon.
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50. Wyoming
> Largest export: Disodium carbonate
> 2015 disodium carbonate value: $833.4 million
> Pct. change in disodium carbonate export value (2014-2015): -6.5%
> Disodium carbonate as share of total state exports: 71.0%

Known more commonly as sodium carbonate, disodium carbonate is by far Wyoming’s most valuable export. Accounting for 71% of the state’s total export value, sodium carbonate represents a bigger share of the state’s exports than any single product in any state.

Trona, a compound of disodium carbonate, can be processed and turned into baking soda. Wyoming has the world’s largest known reserve of the mineral, and the state mined 17 million tons of it in 2015 alone. Church & Dwight, the company behind baking soda maker Arm & Hammer, opened a plant in Green River, Wyoming in the 1960s because of the state’s disodium carbonate resources.