Idaho Department of Agriculture figures show that food and farm products exported during the first six months of 2012 are up 15 percent compared to the same period a year ago. The agency estimates that more than 25 percent of the state's farm products are exported to overseas markets, with dairy products leading the way. Dairy goods such as dry whey, cheese and butter are up 10 percent from a year ago.

Agency officials report exports from Idaho through June 30 totaled $2.7 billion.

State officials attribute the rise to a favorable exchange rate, lower tariffs from trade agreements, strong commodity prices and growing consumer demand. PD


—From Idaho Press-Tribune