Idaho is known for its agricultural products - the prices of which are finally on the rise.Good news for Idaho - prices for four of the state's most important commodities are on the rise.

Although Idaho is the 13th largest state in the nation by square mileage, it is also one of the most sparsely populated, with only 1.5 million people spread throughout the territory. By contrast, New York City alone is home to 8.4 million people. Much of the state's economy is driven by tourism to ski resorts such as Sun Valley and other attractions, including Yellowstone National Park. The rest of the economy is largely dependent upon farming.

Last year, prices for Idaho's agricultural commodities were depressed and the state's agriculture experienced its largest decline in cash receipts in more than four decades, according to the Idaho State Journal. Luckily, that's turning around - and this year, prices for dairy products, beef cattle, potatoes and wheat were all on the rise.

"It's certainly a lot better story than last year," was the guarded response of Greg Andersen, co-owner of Seagull Bay Dairy, a family-owned dairy that has 600 milking cows.

According to a study by the University of Idaho, agriculture generates $12 billion annually in sales - 11 percent of the state's total - and employs 17 percent of Idaho's workforce. The agricultural commodities that the state produces are essential the United States' food supply chain.
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