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Farmers prepare for colder temperatures as harvest season continues

With falling temperatures and lower soybean prices, local farmers are hoping to harvest as much as possible.

Posted: Oct 16, 2018 6:13 PM

TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - The harvest season is entering its second half. With falling temperatures and lower soybean prices, local farmers are hoping to harvest as much as possible.

"I'd like to see mid 60's and full sun. Can't have a better harvest at that,” said Greg Gilbert. Gilbert has been farming in Tippecanoe County for a decade.

Tippecanoe County farmers are facing multiple challenges this harvest. According to Agricultural Economist Chris Hurt, changing weather patterns will determine the harvest's remaining success. "There's been a lot of moisture, fields are pretty saturated. This can make it hard to get through the fields. It can make it difficult for crops to stand,” said Hurt.

The sudden change to cooler temperatures have slowed his preparations for the next growing season. "All tillage and some of the tillage operations right now are just not possible,” said Gilbert.

However, cooler temperatures are not the only factor affecting farmers.

"We're seeing anywhere from a dollar fifty to over two dollars of total revenue loss,” said Gilbert.

When you consider the acreage, the dollars add up. Gilbert's farm alone produces around 75 thousand bushels of soybeans. Those losses add up to more than a hundred thousand dollars this year.

The USDA and Trump administration have authorized up to 12 billion dollars in aid to help farmers like Gilbert. According to Chris Hurt the aid will create higher returns. "That is going to be enough to bring, with the price plus the trade assistance, back close to what price we saw last year,” said Hurt.

The added income will create an extra safety net as crops face continuously colder temperatures.

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