Harsh growing season forces many wheat producer to scrap crop

Wheat farmers struggle in drought

ABILENE, Texas - A lack of rain and a series of late season freezes have destroyed much of the Big Country wheat crop.

"I would say probably 95% of the wheat in Jones County and even surrounding counties probably won't be harvested" says J.J Clawson, an agent with Haechten Crop Insurance.

Most farmers have had to turn to crop insurance this year but it's definitely not free money. Think about it like car or homeowner's insurance; every time you use it, your premiums go up. In addition to that, their guarantees go down.

Guarantees are a portion of the crop's average yield that the farmer can get paid for. That means if you take the insurance year after year, you'll pay more but likely get paid less.

And if our dry pattern continues, wheat won't be the only thing hurting.

"We're going into cotton right now and there's no subsoil moisture," says Clawson, "unless we get some kind of big rain event, we're gonna be right back in cotton in cotton losses as soon as we finish these wheat losses".

This year so far, Abilene has received 4.94 inches of rain. Stamford has picked up 3.36 inches and Roscoe has only seen 1.92 inches.


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