The amount of corn produced in the United States this year is going to be way below expectations. The Department of Agriculture just slashed its harvest estimates quite dramatically in its June report, but some farmers in the Midwest believe that those reduced projections are still way too optimistic. As I have previously detailed, millions upon millions of acres will go unplanted this year, but that is only part of the story. Much of the corn that has actually been planted is coming up very slowly due to the exceedingly poor conditions, and corn farmers all over the Midwest are reporting that their plants look absolutely terrible. If we get picture perfect weather between now and harvest time, this will simply be a terrible year. But if severe heat and/or an early frost hits the Midwest, this could very easily be the worst year that we have ever seen for corn farmers in the United States.
(Article by Michael Snyder republished from TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com)
The other day, Illinois farmer James McCune gathered a large number of his fellow corn farmers for a “Prevent Plant Party”, and the mainstream media showed up to cover it. The following is from CNBC’s coverage of the event…
James McCune, a farmer from Mineral, Illinois, was unable to plant 85% of his intended corn acres and wanted to commiserate with his fellow farmers by hosting the “Prevent Plant Party” at The Happy Spot. He invited them to swap stories while tucking in to fried chicken and a keg of beer in Deer Grove, a village of about 50 people located 120 miles west of Chicago.
“Everybody’s so down in the dumps,” McCune said.
In addition, McCune told Fox Business that this year is “a disaster like I’ve never seen before”, and he said that some of his neighbors got even less corn planted than he did…
“It’s a disaster like I’ve never seen before,” McCune told FOX Business. “My neighbors didn’t get 90 percent of their corn planted.”
After non-stop rain plagued the region this spring – when corn farmers typically get seed in the ground – most have decided time is now too short and are choosing not to plant.
As bad as things are in Illinois right now, the truth is that some neighboring states are in even worse shape.
According to the latest Department of Agriculture report, 73 percent of the cornfields in Illinois have been planted, but in Indiana that figure is sitting at just 67 percent and in Ohio only 50 percent of the fields have been planted.
That is an unmitigated disaster, because the time for planting corn has now passed.
Needless to say, the farmers that were not able to plant crops have been absolutely flooding their insurance companies with claims. Just check out this quote…
“We get pockets of claims every year,” said Luke Sandrock of the Cornerstone Agency insurance company. “We have 1-2 percent of our clients (who typically file). This year, it’s over 90 percent, and so we’ve just never dealt with it on this size of a scale before.”
But it is imperative to remember that even if farmers were able to get their fields planted, that does not mean that everything is going to be okay.
In fact, corn farmers all over the Midwest are deeply distressed by what is emerging from the ground. In his entire farming career, James McCune has never seen anything like this…
A smartphone could fit in the space between James McCune’s index finger and thumb as the Illinois farmer describes the height of crops stunted by incessant rain and unseasonably cool weather.
“Corn’s not supposed to be this tall” in mid-June, McCune, who can trace his family’s farm roots as far back as 1857, said. “It’s supposed to be this tall,” as he gestures just below his waist.
And farmer Rob Sharkey used the word “ugly” to describe the condition of the corn on his farm…
“We planted some stuff that was not pretty,” said corn farmer Rob Sharkey. “But I didn’t have a choice. We did not get conditions that were right for planting, so we went when we could. It’s ugly.”