Tri States Public Radio Staff
Hard to get Info During Shutdown.
Thu October 10, 2013
Late Planting Means Late Harvest
A wet spring put some farmers in the behind schedule and even forced some to replant their crops. Data on how the harvest is progressing in each of the Tri-States is harder to come by than usual.
The USDA and the National Agricultural Statistical Service usually post data for each state on their websites, but the sites are down thanks to the partial federal shutdown.
The last progress reports from Sept 30th, just before the shutdown, put Illinois’s corn harvest 20 percent behind the five year average and the soybean harvest at 15 percent behind.
The USDA report for Illinois is still available because its being hosted on a state website. The information from the Missouri report only seems to be available from private ag news sites like Agfax. It also puts the soybean harvest slightly behind normal and corn more-so.
Mark Giesler who farms 450 acres near Mount Sterling said he is definitely seeing a delayed harvested because of the wet spring.
"We normally would like to start harvest the second week of September and do a lot of harvest in September, and I would say we're at least a month behind," Giesler said.
He said that the other farmers in the area he's talked to are also seeing a delayed harvest.
Iowa’s Ag Secretary Bill Northey did issue a statement Monday as sort of informal replacement for the USDA report.
He said many farmers started harvesting before wet weather late last week, and he says a few days of dry weather will get farmers back into the field.
Farm Bill Expired Sept. 30th
3 of 4 Agencies Shut Down