Power outages alongside mangled timber, ruined crops and damaged grain elevators have been early indications of Hurricane Ida’s influence on Louisiana’s agriculture enterprise.
The Mississippi River was largely shutd for a quantity of days after the storm. A lot of the river had re-opened Thursday afternoon, Aside from a stretch shut to Bridge Metropolis in Jefferson Parish the place There have been power strains Inside the water.
“You are Starting to get barges stacking up,” said Ken Eriksen, senior Vice chairman for agrienterprise at IHS Markit, a market analyst. Barges are dropping off freights, however Can’t get crammed for export, as a Outcome of there Are not any grain elevators Engaged on the decrease Mississippi.
Greater than 95% of U.S. grain exports journey by barge down the Mississippi River to the U.S. Gulf Coast. About 60% of U.S. grain and soybean exports transfer by way of 10 export grain elevators in Louisiana earlier than being shipped Throughout the globe.
“These elevators actually influences worldwide commerce and pricing of grains,” Eriksen. “The river had been shut down and that one stretch is shutd so The complete river is effectively shutd. A lot of them Have not any power but.”
It is estimated a badly damaged grain elevator in Reserve owned by Cargill Might Even be down for weeks if not months, he said. One other Cargill facility in Westwego was additionally damaged.
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Because of A scarcity of Electricity and telephone service, Cargill is simply Starting To evaluate the damage On The two amenities.
The Cargill grain terminal in Reserve is Amongst The numerous largest On the earth and accounts for As a lot as 15% of export quantity from the U.S. Gulf Coast.
The LSU AgCenter estimated The Most very important agricultural financial losses Can be from downed timber and destroyed infrastructure Similar to buildings. Crops Similar to sugarcane, soybeans, citrus and greens took Worthwhile.
“Do You’d like to draw a line from Terrebonne Parish north to the Felicianas, every thing east will see some damage,” said Kurt Guidry, LSU AgCenter area director and agricultural economist.
About 25% of the state’s 500,000 acres of sugarcane have been probably flattened by the hurricane, largely in Lafourche Parish. Typically damaged sugarcane can nonetheless be harvested However it was not immediately clear how a lot damage was carried out to the shut toby sugar mills in Raceland and Thibodaux.
Upwards of 20% of the timberlands across Louisiana are estimated to be misplaced by the storm. There are 172,000 cattle which have been evacuated from southeast Louisiana and 1,200 bales of hay have been delivered to feed livestock in Port Allen and Baton Rouge.