Thursday, September 18, 2014

News
Nationwide Drought Not All Bad News for Some Pike County Farmers
By Brittany Bivins


Farmers across the country are still battling the biggest drought to hit the United States in over 100 years. However, locally, for farmers who managed to raise a crop, there's good news too: a better return on investment.

Michael Sanders has owned his farm in Goshen for decades, growing corn, soybeans, and this time something new: sesame seeds. "The drought out west kind of drove the market over to this side of the country so it's filled in a gap where we need to make income," he said.

The old staples like corn and soybeans are doing well, too. According to USDA Farm Services Agency of Pike County Director Jeff Knotts, the price of soybeans has doubled over previous years. Corn is up by 20 percent nationwide, although Sanders says he sold his for $9 a bushel at the season's height, compated to $3 last year.

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack says the government will contribute about $11.8 million to 22 drought-stricken states this September. Alabama has received $285,00 in aid so far.