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Gov. Whitmer signs bill to save drowning farmers

Posted at 5:09 PM, Jul 08, 2019

LANSING, Mich. — The unprecedented rain we had in the past several months is still causing problems for mid Michigan farmers.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer visited Smuts Farm Monday where she signed a bill to save those farmers who are drowning.

"I have never seen a season with a prolonged cold damp spring-time," Duane Smuts, owner of Smuts Farms, said.

That's the consensus among farmers, even those who have been working the land for decades. Record rainfall putting a damper on their income. What they were able to plant may not be up to par.

"Due to the wet weather, we were forced to work ground that was not optimal and so there will be a lingering effect yield-wise and financial-wise because of that as well," Smuts said.

"It's less about what the field looked like and more about what the farmer's eyes looked like," Gov. Whitmer said. "But there's no way to tell what that impact might be."

"That remains to be seen in totality but we planted approximately 40% of our intended acres of corn, 60 Percent of our intended acres of soybeans," Smuts said.

At Horrocks farm market, locally grown strawberries just came in--several weeks later than normal.

"Michigan cherries and blueberries, as well. We're still waiting on those actually and then sweet corn too. It's not knee high by the fourth of July," Jake Devlin, a manager at Horrocks, said.

The executive director of the Michigan Corn Growers Association said they may not recover from this season for three years.

Corn growers only have about 70% of their crop planted, which will likely be another thing hitting grocery store shelves later than normal.

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