Some reports say this year’s ongoing drought is one of the worst they’ve ever seen.
This drought is so bad that some farmers are seeing 97 percent losses, according to Ag Commissioner Doug Goehring, but help has been on the way as other states are answering the call.
With a drought…comes extra costs for farmers and ranchers.
Doug Goehring, ND Ag Commissioner, says, “Every little bit helps.”
The big issue right now. Getting hay while keeping costs low.
“A lot of these farmers and ranchers buy hay someplace else then all of the sudden it hits them that they have a huge trucking bill on top of that. So they spent a lot of money just to buy the hay and feed now they have to truck it back and they didn’t quite budget for that,” says Goehring.
“North Dakota is seeking aid for this drought for both farmers and ranchers and several states have already stepped up their game. And that includes Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Nebraska just to name a few.”
Laura Field, VP of Legislative Affairs for Nebraska Cattleman, says, “Governor Ricketts issued an executive order waiving the transportation requirements for trucks that would be passing through Nebraska hauling hay to both North and South Dakota.”
That means that length, width, and weight requirements are all waived for things that you wouldn’t typically haul very long. It went into effect right away, and last until August 9th as long as conditions improve.
Agriculture is Nebraska’s number one industry, so they know how hard it is for North Dakotans and how it is affecting our state.
“If its something where the state can be helpful and take in some barriers down to help get those things done on a temporary basis, I think that our Governor has been really responsive to the industry,” says Field.
So far there has been a lot of help from others in the agricultural community.
Goehring says, “It’s been wonderful the response we’ve been getting from a lot of the farmers and ranchers.”
Doug Goehring says that North Dakota is still getting more information from other states that want to donate hay and potentially making a program to disperse some of that hay throughout the state.
Wyoming was another state that sent out a note to their producers saying that North Dakota is in a need of hay.