‘Too wet to work’: Farmers say constant rain delaying soybean, corn crop production across Ohio

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MIDDLEFIELD, Ohio — Everything is in working order over at Kevin O’Reilly’s 700 acre farm, except the soil.

“We were out in the fields trying to get some tillage work done, but it was really the soil. An inch or two below the surface was too wet to work.” O’Reilly said.

The wet spring has left the state’s farmers about two months behind on planting staple crops like corn and soybeans.

Officials report only half of Ohio’s corn crop has been planted and only a third of the soybeans.

Crops that are already growing could also be at risk from all this rain.

“Some of it has completely washed out and just wont come back, so the corn crop is struggling.  We have about a fourth of our soybean crop planted and of the 100 acres of soybeans that are planted, about 30 acres will have to be replanted if we have that opportunity.” O’Reilly said.

Farmers in the southern and western parts of the state are in worse shape because it’s been wetter there.

Ohio Farm Bureau Federation spokesman Ty Higgins said most corn should have been in the ground by the beginning of June.

He said if the rain keeps up, some farmers may have to file losses with crop insurance.

“Crop insurance will give them a bit of a safety net for their 2019 losses for corn. It’s going to cost 55% of what they average production wise on that farm. For soybeans, it will cover about 60% of their average production history,” Higgins said.

Higgins explained that most of the corn and soybeans growing in Ohio feed live stock, and with crops hurting throughout the Midwest, the prices of meat could slowly rise.

In a press release issued on Friday, Governor Mike DeWine announced that he has sent a formal request to the US Department of Agriculture for a USDA disaster declaration for Ohio so that assistance can be made available to farmers.

“We recognize the tremendous challenges facing our agricultural community, and we are working to identify any and all sources of possible relief,” said Governor DeWine.

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