A recent assessment by the U.S. Department of Agriculture revealed that only 15 percent of Iowa’s corn crop is in good condition, with nearly 50 percent in poor or very poor condition.
For the past few months, farmers across the country have been caught in an ongoing and rapidly worsening drought. About two-thirds of the country is experiencing some level of drought, with roughly one-third suffering from severe to extreme drought conditions. The record high temperatures and lack of rainfall are doing significant damage to crops across the country and some farmers are anticipating crop losses of up to 80 percent.
The news out of Iowa (as well as the rest of the Corn Belt) underscores the damage being done to the farming sector. In addition to uncovering severe damage to the state’s corn crop, the USDA assessment revealed that 96 percent of Iowa’s topsoil and 97 percent of its subsoil was rated short to very short of moisture. In addition, about 39 percent of the state’s soybean crop was in poor to very poor condition.
Iowa is the nation’s leading producer of corn.
Nationwide the conditions are largely similar. About half of the national corn crop is in poor to very poor condition, with percentages ranging from 74 and 72 in Illinois and Indiana, to 41 and 39 in Wisconsin and Nebraska.
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer