As the leading mode of transportation for Illinois soybeans, railroads provide more than 7,000 miles of track to connect farmers and elevators with domestic and international customers. Illinois is the only state in which all seven class-1 railroads operate, which gives Illinois farmers and processors an advantage in reaching markets in nearly every direction.

With Illinois farmers continuing to break soybean yield records, rail infrastructure is struggling to provide adequate capacity. Growing demand for rail transportation coupled with a finite amount of available rail capacity means rail freight rates will continue to rise as both ag and non-ag industries vie for limited space.

Additional Railway Tools, Resources and Studies


Illinois Railroad Map shows all of the rail lines in Illinois with insets detailing those in the St. Louis and Chicago areas.


Top Rail Carriers Ranked in Annual Survey
See how various railroad carriers were ranked in this annual survey of agriculture shippers conducted by the Soy Transportation Coalition.

Are You a Soybean Farmer?

Find out how your operation could be impacted by an aging infrastructure and what you can do to help. Visit