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Idaho ag posts third straight record year for cash receipts

The Aberdeen Times of Aberdeen, Idaho

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Sugar beets, wheat decline

Idaho's farmers and ranchers made it a threepeat in 2013. They posted a third year of record cash receipts with a tally of $7.82 billion, up 3 percent from 2012, according to University of Idaho agricultural economists.

Net farm income was projected at $2.73 billion, a decline of about a half percent or $ 12 million but considered essentially stable when compared to 2012. A slight increase in expenses accounted for most of the decrease. Even so, the 2013 net farm income was 56 percent above the 10-year average.

The projected tally of cash receipts and net farm income was included in the report, "The Financial Condition of Idaho Agriculture: 2013" released Thursday, Jan. 2.

"Idaho agriculture continues to show strength," said John Foltz, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences dean at Moscow. "Idaho ranks as the West's third-largest agricultural state, and agribusiness is the state's largest industry."

Foltz presented the report Thursday to the Idaho Legislature's Economic Outlook and Revenue Assessment Committee, which surveys the state's economic condition to prepare an estimate of expected tax revenues on which to base the state's 2015 budget.

The state's livestock industries, beef and milk, generated the majority of cash receipts, nearly $4.3 billion or nearly 55 percent of the total. Milk sales totaled $2,573 billion, up 6 percent from 2012, and cattle and calf sales generated $1,505 billion, up 8 percent. Other livestock sales, primarily sheep, generated $205 million, a 12 percent jump.

Potatoes led crop receipts with $965 million, a projected 1 percent increase from 2012.Overall crop receipts dipped by 1 percent or $50 million to $3.54 billion largely on declines by sugar beets and wheat.

Sugar beet receipts fell 23 percent or $75 million to $251 million in 2013, reflecting a production drop of 2 percent and a sales price of $40 per ton, a 21 percent drop from 2012.

Wheat receipts dropped, too, by 8 percent or $66 million to $732 million, reflecting a 1 percent drop in the average price. Wheat production was up 4 percent from 2012, according to the report.

With $539 million in sales, hay was Idaho's third-ranking crop, posting a 6 percent increase from 2012. Barley, with sales of $337 million ranked fourth and posted a 10 percent increase. Dry beans posted a strong 12 percent increase on sales of $104 million.

This year's accounting of crop receipts, however, reflected some information gaps resulting from the government shutdown in October. Sales of onions, a major Idaho crop, were not reported this year.

The report was prepared by UI Extension agricultural economists Ben Eborn of Teton County Extension and Paul Patterson at the UI Idaho Falls Research and Extension Center. Garth Taylor in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology on the UI Moscow campus co-authored the report, the 11 th in the annual series.

The report is available online at

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Original Publication Date: January 15, 2014

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