Inflation, late planting season could challenge farmers
NORTH DAKOTA (KVRR) – April showers arrive but May flowers may need to wait a couple weeks longer as farmers closely observe the effects.
Farmers on the western side of North Dakota who have been experiencing drought conditions might get the needed relief from a rain and snow filled month of April. Some are worried they’ll have to start planting crops later than usual.
“Now we are a little bit late with starting the wheat seeding, but nothing to worry about too much. We want to have wheat and barley, the small grains planted, as early as possible because typically those crops do better when it is cool. We don’t want them to be in the hot part of the summer when they flower,” North Dakota State University Extension Agronomist Hans Kandel said.
Rising costs is another challenge farmers will face this year.
“The number one thing that people are talking about – input prices. Fertilizer prices are at an all-time high as well as fuel prices and it’s also reflected in other inputs like herbicides. It looks that the farm input prices are record high this year,” Kandel said.
The war in Europe is also affecting farmers due to high prices which could mean more open land in this region.
“If you think about Russia and Ukraine, those are major sunflower producing areas. North Dakota and South Dakota are two major producing areas in the world in the northern region in our U.S. market we could see an increase in acres because the prices will be potentially high for the sunflower oil,” Kandel said.
Kandel adds it’s too early to be panicking now about harvesting season as farmers have the flexibility to shift crops like sunflowers if it’s too late for wheat and barley.