Cornucopia’s Take: As markets drop, many farmers are plowing new fields to increase harvests, sometimes removing old windbreaks to do so. Shifting weather patterns present further challenges. The proposed Farm Bill would cut conservation funds, removing incentives for farmers to take much-needed steps to prevent wholesale soil erosion.
When the dust settles, farmers focus on land stewardship
Center for Rural Affairs
by Cora Fox
In recent past, the Great Plains has experienced extreme weather conditions. Most recently, we witnessed very high winds combined with dry conditions, resulting in dust clouds reminiscent of the 1930s.
With a challenging agricultural economy, partnered with changes in land values, larger equipment, and farming practices, many farmers and ranchers are removing windbreaks. Budgets are tight and producers are trying to maximize use of the land, but risk the loss of valuable topsoil. Windbreaks can be used to control soil erosion by wind and water, enhance crop production, and protect livestock. Read Full Article »