South Dakota ag�s economic impact increases to $21.3 billion

South Dakota agâ�?�?s economic impact increases to $21.3 billion Agriculture is a "potent engine for economic development" in South Dakota, according to SDSU associate professor Gary Taylor. Agriculture has a $21.3 billion economic impact on the state, up from $19.3 billion in last year's study. This represents 36.3 percent of South Dakota's total economic activity. Dr. Taylor's findings, which include direct, indirect and induced effects, are based on 2006 information, the most recent data available. The noted increase in economic impact was likely a product of expansion in the ethanol industry and an increase in commodity prices. "Agriculture has always been the life-blood of South Dakota's economy," said South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Bill Even. "Dr. Taylor's research demonstrates that the best way to build our economy is to invest in our state's number one industry — agriculture." Agriculture employs 173,101 South Dakotans, or more than 40 percent of all jobs in the state. Further, the industry's direct and indirect business taxes generate $645 million in annual tax revenues. This represents approximately 50 percent of South Dakota's total tax collections. In addition, every dollar generated by production agriculture creates $1.374 worth of economic activity in South Dakota. Of the twenty different sectors Dr. Taylor studied, agriculture had, by far, the highest "multiplier" — economic impact — of any industry. Industries with higher multipliers, such as agriculture, have a larger positive economic impact than sectors with lower multipliers. Dr. Taylor's "Economic Impact of Agriculture on South Dakota" is available at: http://econ.sdstate. edu/Research/Commentator/No507.pdf

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