Droughts causing food on your plate to cost more
10:36 PM, Apr 1, 2011 | 1 comments
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV)– It’s a cycle many farmers would rather not be a part of. Droughts are causing inflations from the fields to the dinner table.
Weather forecasters for the National Weather Service say 98 percent of Arkansas is in a drought and some parts of the state are in extreme drought.
Officials say more precipitation is needed to end a drought that’s continued from last year and provide enough moisture for many crops to start growing.
Many farmers have already begun planting corn, rice and other crops, but the dry weather has hit farmers across the region.
The National Weather Service expects more rain starting this month, particularly across southern and western Arkansas. Without a substantial rain though, the drought could cause fires and hurt or destroy crops.
“What we need is longer periods of precipitation, over a period of weeks to catch up,” said John Robinson, from the National Weather Service’s Little Rock office.
The dry weather has allowed many farmers to plant corn ahead of schedule, said Steve Eddington, spokesman for the Arkansas Farm Bureau. To get a crop to come up and grow, most farmers can irrigate, but that can become expensive, he said.
Professor and Economist at the University of Arkansas’ agricultural division Robert Coats says reservoirs used for irrigation remain depleted from a year’s worth of dry weather.
Coats added if these drought conditions persist, we could really see a jump in prices at the grocery, meaning you could end up spend more for buying meat and grain products.