MOSCOW, Idaho-Idaho's growers and ranchers posted a record year in 2011, with a projected $7.4 billion in cash receipts, up 29 percent from the previous year, according to University of Idaho College of Agricultural and Life Sciences economists.
Agricultural producers' net farm income fared even better, soaring 88 percent in 2011 from the past year to $2.6 billion, according to economists Ben Eborn, Paul Patterson and Garth Taylor. Their report, "The Financial Condition of Idaho Agriculture: 2011 Projections," was published by University of Idaho Extension and released Jan. 5. The effort is supported by state Agricultural Research and Extension Service funding.
In terms of today's dollars, potato prices have risen 40 percent since 1970. In inflation-adjusted dollars, however, prices are 43 percent less today than in 1970. Growers' total revenues have risen 86 percent in today's dollars. In terms of inflation-adjusted dollars, however, growers eked out just a 3 percent increase in total revenues.
Idaho potato growers remained economically competitive because of major improvements in growing and storage methods, and the development of more efficient potato varieties, many tailored for specific markets by university researchers in cooperation with growers.
The report's authors include Ben Eborn, University of Idaho Extension educator in Teton County; Paul Patterson, Extension Agricultural Economist in Idaho Falls; and Garth Taylor, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology economist at Moscow. All are faculty in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.
The report is online at PotatoGrower.com. Click on "Extras" and then "The Financial Condition of Idaho Agriculture: 2011 Projections."