A funny thing happened in the Red River Valley this week: water fell from the sky. The precipitation came at a make-or-break time for many farmers and may give the region something to harvest this fall, when commodity prices will be high across the drought-stricken Midwest.
We may not be able to do much about the weather, but farmers could do more to guard against the inevitable arrival of dry summers. The director of the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment says it starts with diversifying the crops they plant.
Of course, the decisions farmers make about planting are often influenced by the agricultural policies charted in Washington D.C. And right now the U.S. House is conspicuously quiet. The chamber has not scheduled a vote on a new farm bill. Minnesota Congressman Collin is still optimistic a bill will emerge. But MPR reports House leaders may put off hard decisions by extending the old bill for another year and authorizing emergency drought aid separately.