The fall harvest has been a difficult one for Minnesota’s sugarbeet farmers. Starting in October, fields were too wet for many farmers to dig beets from the ground. Then, in the past two weeks, a series of frigid days froze the unharvested beets still in the fields — and the harvest was officially declared over.
Agricultural producers affected by natural disasters in 2018 and 2019, including Hurricane Dorian, can apply for assistance through the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+), a U.S. Department of Agriculture program. “There is no doubt that extreme weather has greatly impacted North Carolina’s agricultural producers over the last several years, and 2019 is no exception.”
Climate change is posing an existential threat to the precarious lives of farmers across the country. More intense and frequent weather disasters are wiping out entire harvests, and warmer winters are exposing crops to severe frost damage. For apples, a warm spell in the winter will force trees to flower prematurely and expose the buds to unpredictable winter frosts, hail and other extreme weather.
Lice infections in cattle are not anything any rancher wants to see; the pests hurt profits. The sad fact is that every herd has some level of infestation. Lice affect cows, stockers and feedlot cattle, hurting their performance from December through March. The USDA has estimated that livestock producers lose up to $125 million per year due to effects of lice infestations.
Harvest is a busy time of year, even if the weather is on your side. But let’s be real — the weather hasn’t been on anyone’s side this year. Living in South Dakota has been difficult with winds, rains, early snow, flooding, and a few tornadoes. It hasn’t been an easy harvest, but who would be surprised with the way this year started.
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