The USDA approved the state’s disaster declaration request for 47 of North Dakota’s 53 counties. Gov. Doug Burgum and Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring sent a letter last week to Secretary Sonny Perdue requesting the declaration. This was in response to farmers dealing with excessive moisture this harvest season, on top of continuous international market disputes. The request comes the same day Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., is hosting Under-Secretary Bill Northey.
Governor Burgum said in a statement, “We continue to explore every available avenue to make sure our ag producers have the resources and tools they need to cope with these unprecedented wet conditions that are delaying the harvest and hurting our livestock producers.”
Senators John Hoeven and Kevin Cramer and Congressman Kelly Armstrong urged U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue early in November 2019 to approve the State of North Dakota’s request for an agriculture disaster designation as a result of the extreme late season rainfall as well as the early snowstorm.
The state is seeking a designation for 47 counties. Producers in counties with an approved secretarial disaster designation for the blizzard will be automatically eligible for disaster assistance under the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+).
“Producers in North Dakota have been challenged this fall with excess moisture and the early snowstorm. These natural disasters are compounding an already challenging time for our farmers and ranchers,” said Hoeven, chairman of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Committee. “We’ve worked to make disaster funding available to help producers recover from these natural disasters. That’s why we’re urging Secretary Perdue to issue this disaster designation, which will make assistance available to help our producers who lost crops.”
“Many North Dakota producers were greatly impacted by recent snowstorms and excessive rainfall,” said Senator Cramer. “Secretary Perdue has been consistently attentive to the needs of our agricultural community, and we hope he approves this disaster designation.”
“Unprecedented September rain and an early October snowstorm have combined to give North Dakota farmers a terrible harvest season. With a secretarial designation, producers will be able to access disaster relief that is essential in helping them recover from these events which are beyond their control,” said Armstrong.
Gov. Eric Holcomb asked the United States Department of Agriculture Friday to designate 88 counties as disaster zones. To be able to request a county be designated an agricultural disaster area, at least 30 percent of a single crop must be damaged or lost. Many farmers across the state were only able to plant a portion of their crops after a wet planting season caused fields to flood.
Indiana Farm Bureau President Randy Kron says he applauds the governor’s effort to help Hoosier farmers. “He realizes the magnitude of what’s happened here this spring, because it’s here, in Indiana it’s been unprecedented, says Kron. “My 35 years of farming, I’ve never seen anything like this.”
Crop losses go beyond corn and soybeans. The USDA changes its long term outlook as Governors across the United States start asking for Agricultural Disaster Relief from the USDA.
Opaliris Studios Behind the scenes, Major Winter Storm hits Newland North Carolina.