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History of Agriculture, Utah
Taken from the Utah History Encyclopedia. (Links Added)
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Many projects failed; but where public subsidy, private sacrifice, and promising natural conditions existed, some finally succeeded. Northern Utah's Bear River Valley Project had poor success until it was taken over after 1902 by the Utah Idaho Sugar Company. The Strawberry Project - a federal reclamation program launched in 1905 - opened 16,000 new acres in Utah Valley. The long-range impact of these projects was apparent in the high agricultural production of Box Elder and Utah counties throughout the twentieth century.

Indebtedness was another evidence that Utah farmers were seeking new benefits from the land. Debt had been nearly unknown in the earlier period; but in 1890 twenty percent of farms were mortgaged, and by 1920 nearly fifty percent of Utah's farmers labored under heavy debts. The commercial shift was also apparent in an aggressive quest for cash crops. Sugar beets made the biggest difference. Beginning with one processing plant at Lehi in 1891, twenty were built throughout the state by 1918. In 1920, Utah farmers produced $28,000,000 worth of sugar, giving them third place nationally and making sugar production second only to mining within Utah. Dairying, truck crops, orchards, and canneries also flourished. With more than half the state's canneries, a modest meat packing industry, and enough milling to make it one of the ten leading centers nationally, Ogden was easily the state's most important agricultural manufacturing center.


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