Idaho is known for its mountain peaks, crystal clear rivers and wide-open spaces. We’re also known for agriculture. Agriculture is an essential part of Idaho’s heritage and our economy. It’s thanks to Idaho’s hard-working and innovative farmers and ranchers that Idaho produces more than 185 different commodities and keeps putting delicious food on our tables.
Idaho is a production powerhouse ranking in the top 10 in the U.S. for the production of more than 25 crops and livestock.
What makes Idaho agriculture so special?
Our hot days and cool nights coupled with advanced irrigation from mountain-fed reservoirs helps produce superior, consistent crops. This also results in more flavorful fruits, sweeter wine grapes and those Famous Idaho Potatoes. However, the perfect growing environment would not mean as much without innovative and hard-working producers who have made Idaho an agricultural dynamo
Idaho’s potato growers produce more than 100 million hundredweight of potatoes annually. Our fertile volcanic soil is ideal for producing a potato with a high solid content – the secret behind fluffy bakers and firm French fries.
Our innovative, advanced, and hugely productive dairy industry has made Idaho a consistent top-three producer of milk and cheese in the United States. In addition to cheese, Idaho produces everything from whey proteins and butter to ice cream and yogurt.
With more cattle than people in Idaho, the beef industry is an incredibly important sector for all of Idaho. Most beef cows are raised on open pasture and rangeland by ranch families dedicated to sustainable practices for future generations. Idaho is also a producer of lamb, trout and pork.
When it comes to grains, Idaho’s reputation for quality and consistency is well-known producing some of the best soft white wheat in the world. Idaho also is unique in that our growers produce all five classes of wheat. Idaho ranks No. 1 in the U.S. in barley and malt production.
Idaho seed production is also recognized globally. Idaho is a leader in a broad range of seed crops from hybrid sweet corn to beans, Kentucky bluegrass seed, carrot and onion seed.
Idaho fruits are prized for their superior color and flavor. Apples, cherries, peaches and other fruits all thrive here thanks to our unique climate. The long summer days and well-drained soils are also key ingredients for growing exceptional wine grapes and fantastic wines.
Part of the largest onion production region in the U.S. is also in Idaho. With state-of-the-art packing facilities, Idaho’s onions are known for size, quality and storability.
Idaho is the No. 1 alfalfa hay producing state in the nation and is also a major producer of hops, sugarbeets, peas, lentils and dry edible beans. Diversified and productive, Idaho’s farmers also produce many other commodities as well.
Perfect climate, cutting edge technology, extensive irrigation systems, and most importantly—skilled and hard-working people. That’s the bounty of Idaho.
So how do we thank our farmers for such an abundance of diverse and delicious food grown locally every year? We source our food from local purveyors, distributors, grocers, and farmers’ markets. Look for the Idaho Preferred logo and you’ll know it’s from Idaho.
Support our local economy and our local communities to keep Idaho farm families going and growing strong.