In the immediate aftermath of the storm, farmers have just been worried about getting power back and about cleaning up damaged or destroyed buildings, grain bins, homes and trees. There have been relatively few deaths and no reports of large-scale loss of livestock. But there are longer-term ramifications for those in the storm’s path.
Although the extent of the crop damage is yet to be determined. there is clearly significant crop damage in large parts of Iowa, Hart said.
“We don’t know for sure how badly the crops are damaged,” he said.
Some fields were completely cut off and laid down. They may not be salvageable, he said. Others are damaged but there may still be corn to harvest. In still others, there is some kind of crop but it may need to be harvested as silage. There will almost certainly be grain quality issues this fall.
There will also be issues regarding grain storage, because numerous bins both on farms and at grain elevator locations were destroyed. With only weeks until harvest, few of those bins will be replaced in time to store crops coming out of the field this fall.
“We were already short of storage,” Hart said. “This exacerbates that situation.”