Louisiana Agriculture Looks to Rebound After Big Blow From Hurricane Ida – Growing Produce


In any given hurricane season, all it takes is one to make it memorable. For people who stay and work in Louisiana, Hurricane Ida will go down in historic previous for 2021 and past. The Class 4 storm not solely flattened homes and companies with 150+ mph winds and flooding surge, However in addition destayred a critical blow to A lot of the state’s agriculture producers.

LSU AgCenter Extension brokers have been busy To start damage evaluation and restoration from Hurricane Ida. Early indications current accidents to crops and associated infrastructure That Can be “in depth.”

Contemplating the spaces most affected, The Most very important financial influence is Extra probably to be to agricultural infrastructure and timber, Based mostly on Kurt Guidry, LSU AgCenter Regional Director and agricultural economist. As properly as, sugarcane, fruit and vegetable crops, staystock, soybeans, and the horticulture enterprise additionally expert losses.

“Do You’d like to draw a line from Terrebonne Parish north to the Felicianas, every thing east will see some damage,” Guidry Recognized.

As of this submit, it’s nonetheless too early to get A exact damage evaluation, but Guidry suspects A pair of of the infrastructure loss Launched on by Ida Shall be Simply like what the southwestern portion of the state expert with Hurricane Laura in 2020.

“We’re getting reviews Of good damage to fencing, buildings, and farm buildings,” he said.

A doc-breaking stat from Entergy Corp.: Almost 31,000 power poles in its Louisiana and Mississippi service space sustained damage As a Outcome of of Ida. That is Greater than double The quantity reported from Hurricane Laura.

Louisiana produces roughly 500,000 acres of sugarcane, As a lot as 25% of Which might be affected by Hurricane Ida, said AgCenter sugarcane specialist Kenneth Gravois.

One silver lining: The sugarcane harvest Continues to be a few weeks amethod, And since the climate improves over time, the lodged cane Could begin to erect itself, Gravois added.

Relating to damage to the native timber enterprise, Guidry estimates the area recurrents about 5% to as extreme as 22% of complete manufacturing in Louisiana. Flyovers by the Louisiana Division of Agriculture and Forestry will finally decide losses.

Cotton is ancompletely different staple crop By which Ida influenceed. Earlier to the storm, USDA reviews confirmed what Appeared to be A strong cotton crop in progress. Post storm, cotton growers in Mississippi are hoping for a scorching, dry September to make up for flooding from earlier Inside the summertime, solely to be topped off by Ida.

Even a quantity of hours after making landfall, the storm remained strong and slowly made its method north by way of The The rest of Louisiana, Mississippi, and completely different parts of the Mid-South. A quantity of days later, what was left of Ida nonetheless had enough juice to dump historic rainfall throughout parts of the Northeast U.S. Parts Of latest Jersey, Ny, and Pennsylvania have been hit notably exhausting by floods.

The conventional peak of Atlantic hurricane season is September 10.

Maintain tuned as crop damage evaluations and estimates Are out tright here.

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Paul Rusnak is the Senior On-line Editor of Florida Grower, American Vegetable Grower, American Fruit Grower, and Greenhouse Grower magazines, all Meister Media Worldwide manufacturers. He is based in Northeast Florida. See all author tales right here.


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