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Crop Conundrum

Corn problems
Corn problems(KFYR)
Published: Jul. 17, 2020 at 10:44 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Across the county, farmers planted 92 million acres of corn, and expect to harvest 84 million, according to the USDA. However, North Dakota is facing an economic bottleneck.

Farmers are anticipating a good harvest, but don’t think the demand will be there.

Spring harvest is underway. Better late than never. But the delays to that planting season are rolling into this one. And the July rain isn’t doing the planting schedule any favors.

Some parts of the state are in a drought, others are flooded. And that’s forcing many to wait to plant.

“It’s a struggle. It’s still extremely wet down here. We’re still battling it. We’re one of the areas that have been receiving really good moisture. So we’ve got a nice crop coming,” said Paul Thomas, ND Crown Growers Association.

And they’re worried these issues will roll into next year as well. But things get tougher down the economic chain.

For those who were able to grow a good crop, the pandemic and ongoing trade disputes have taken shots at the market. And farmers are on the front lines.

“These losses are real being caused by COVID. They’re not just part of the normal marketing of our good production that we’re doing,” Thomas said.

Normally, corn growers could rely on ethanol production to keep demand up. But the drop in fuel demand is dropping ethanol production. Since March nationwide, the drop in ethanol has resulted in 467 million fewer bushels of corn being used; according to the Renewable Fuels Association.

As a result of the pandemic’s effects on demand, the Renewable Fuels Association said sales dropped by $3 billion since March.

Not welcoming news for an industry that was facing widespread production shutdowns before the pandemic started.Across the county, farmers planted 92 million acres of corn, and expect to harvest 84 million, according to the USDA. However, North Dakota is facing an economic bottleneck.

Farmers are anticipating a good harvest, but don’t think the demand will be there. Jacob Notermann has more on where it’s going to go and if the entire state is seeing the same thing.

Spring harvest is underway. Better late than never. But the delays to that planting season are rolling into this one. And the July rain isn’t doing the planting schedule any favors. Some parts of the state are in a drought, others are flooded. And that’s forcing many to wait to plant. “It’s a struggle. It’s still extremely wet down here. We’re still battling it. We’re one of the areas that have been receiving really good moisture. So we’ve got a nice crop coming,” said Paul Thomas, ND Crown Growers Association.

And they’re worried these issues will roll into next year as well. But things get tougher down the economic chain.

For those who were able to grow a good crop, the pandemic and ongoing trade disputes have taken shots at the market. And farmers are on the front lines.

“These losses are real being caused by COVID. They’re not just part of the normal marketing of our good production that we’re doing,” Thomas said.

Normally, corn growers could rely on ethanol production to keep demand up. But the drop in fuel demand is dropping ethanol production.

Since March nationwide, the drop in ethanol has resulted in 467 million fewer bushels of corn being used; according to the Renewable Fuels Association.

As a result of the pandemic’s effects on demand, the Renewable Fuels Association said sales dropped by $3 Billion since March.

Not welcoming news for an industry that was facing widespread production shutdowns before the pandemic started.

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