FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer will talk about the effects of the recent drought in Kentucky and throughout the Midwest on a national television business program.
Commissioner Comer will appear on the Fox Business program “MONEY with Melissa Francis” July 25 at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
“I sympathize with all the farmers whose operations are suffering because of the drought,” Commissioner Comer said. “They feel frustrated and helpless. Some of them are facing tough decisions that will affect their businesses for the rest of this year and even for years to come. I am in constant contact with federal and state officials to help our farmers get the help they need.”
As of July 15, 77 percent of Kentucky’s corn crop was rated poor or very poor, the Kentucky office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service reported in its weekly crop and weather report. Seventy-three percent of pasture and 52 percent of soybeans were rated poor or very poor.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has designated 26 western Kentucky counties as primary natural disaster areas because of the drought and excessive heat. Producers in those counties are eligible to apply for low-interest emergency loans and cut hay in Conservation Reserve Program acres. Six Kentucky counties contiguous to the designated counties also were named in the declaration. In all, 1,297 counties throughout the United States have been designated as primary natural disaster areas.
Commissioner Comer advised farmers who have federal crop insurance to consult with their adjusters before making any major decisions about their crops. He said Kentucky farmers – including those outside the disaster area declaration – should keep good records and stay in touch with their local Farm Service Agency offices.