Drought hits the US; farmers in trouble

Soil in Colorado.

  • BACKGROUND

A wave of sun hit the Midwest and Great Plain areas in what is said to be the worst drought of the generation. Turning previously irrigated and flourishing croplands into a ‘desiccation’. It has been a hard blow to nearly every farmer there, especially the ones living on meager wages. Farmers are now faced with a situation were crops are perishing and subsequently yields are plummeting downwards. This has caused public worries all over the country. Sorry, worldwide. This situation in the Midwest might just expand hunger to the world’s poor.

The drought was a very unprecedented occurrence, many linking it to global warming effects. We are really the ones to blame, as almost one-third of US is flanked by 100+ degree conditions.

  • AILING CROPS

Corn Cob.

The droughts in the Midwest have left crops high and dry. Dry, sultry weather has shrunk corn stalks and leaves some cobs without even a single kernel. Many will say bye-bye to biofuels, a major portion of which is constituted by corn [fermented] which the EU and US relish.  Both the EU and the US are quite dependent on biofuels which make up a bulk of the renewable energy fuel sources used in vehicles. As one can witness, many countries are in the loop and are being adversely effected by this drought.  A domino effect is largely in play.

Farmers work on a soybean field.

Soybean flowers are drying up, shriveling, and soon expected to fall off on the back of extremely dry and desiccate conditions.

Some farmers have fully given up, while others are fighting to stay afloat. Many are falling behind set delivery quotas to their wholesalers. This is causing shortages and rising prices. Prices are said to be the highest ever for corn and soybeans. Though unfavorable for wholesalers, the higher prices is the only salvaging point for farmers – the income from raised prices are keeping the farmers afloat. Otherwise they would be in grave trouble.

At this point everyone should be singing:

Don’t give me some sunshine

Give me some rain…..

blah blah blah blah (you get the picture.)

  • A NOTE FROM BRITISH POULTRY COUNCIL (BPC)

Chickens are flailing, pissed and unsatisfied  that they have not been fed properly, as a portion of their primary food – wheat and soybeans – perishes in the flaring heat. If wheat and soybeans shortages persist then the amount the BPC spends on feed could very well rise to 1.9bn.  Ever since the shortages have taken place, chickens are producing less and less eggs.

  • LIFE OF THE FARMER

Chris Covelli who owns a farm Southern Wisconsin said that he planted about 1000 zucchini seed, and only about half sprouted, leaving the rest trapped under a heap of parched soil.

Chris Covelli works on his farm in Southern Wisconsin.

Covelli has to spend days and even parts of the night working industriously on his farm just to meet the demands. He said:

You just do what you have to do. If that means doing more plantings, trying different crops, waking up at 2 a.m. to move the irrigation pipe, we do it. That’s what hard work is.

Doubling up irrigation, raising costs by planting more seeds, working overtime – all a part of  a farmer’s life right now. A lifestyle not to the likes of many, I say.

  • TRADERS HAPPY

In the midst of all the setbacks, traders seem delighted. Traders gainsay the pessimism with a  profound sense of exuberance, as supply of vital crops weakens and prices surge upwards. This situation is similar to what is happening in the oil industry. So as investors search for the money bagger – well, I say, this drought has made investing in the food industry a perfect, opportune gambit!

  • WHAT I & SOME HAVE TO SAY

A forecast by an analyst:

“The severity of the drought has been so massive,” said Sudakshina Unnikrishnan, an analyst at Barclays. “Even if we did have rain now in the US, it could not reverse the damage for the corn crop.”

 Hope is bleak.

What can the United States possibly do? Nothing much, EXCEPT TO PRAY FOR SOME RAIN!

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Take a look:

References

http://www.fin24.com/Economy/US-drought-woes-deepen-20120727

http://www.ocala.com/article/20120731/WIRE/120739967?tc=ar

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444130304577561531263602916.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_LEFTTopStories

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-07-31/south-america-readies-record-crops-amid-u-s-drought.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/retailandconsumer/9453629/Record-US-drought-drives-up-chicken-and-egg-prices.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=35COGhvkS2A&list=UUaNFRkRT5YEEyljWtYBcA4w&index=3&feature=plpp_video

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One thought on “Drought hits the US; farmers in trouble

  1. Pingback: Water Wars by Cromwell. «

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