Iowa farmers have been punished by weather, trade fights

It’s time to find a solution to help them move forward

In the best of times, farming is full of risk.

So much of a farmer’s livelihood depends on circumstances beyond their control. They must have faith that seeds will germinate and grow as expected, that livestock will remain healthy and that the weather will be favorable. The weather is a big factor, the ultimate unknown that farmers must deal with.

Recently, the weather has not been a friend to Iowa farmers.

For much of the summer, the state has been in a drought that is judged to be extreme in at least some places.

Then came Monday’s storm. It brought rain, but probably not enough to quench the drought. Worse, it packed high speed winds that flattened crops and wrecked many bins full of grain

That storm came in the aftermath of a couple years of trade disputes with China that greatly reduced exports. Those trade disputes were supposed to be settled by what officials have called the Phase One agreement between the United States and China. Under that agreement China is supposed to buy $36.5 billion worth of American agricultural products. Obviously, Iowa farmers would benefit from that agreement, but there seems to be some question if China is going to hold up its end of the deal.

Plus, the world is still dealing with the coronavirus pandemic that nearly crippled the economy.

All of those things combined must have some farmers close to despair when they look at their financials. And when Iowa farmers are hurting, the rest of the state is, too.

It’s time for famers to get some help.

We don’t presume to have the answer for this situation. Instead we call on government agencies and farm groups to work together to devise a plan that will get farmers through this latest series of problems.

Iowa’s future demands nothing less.


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