Louisiana Harvest at a Standstill

by the National Ag Statistics Service, Louisiana Field Office

The latest Crop Progress and Condition Report from the National Ag Statistics Service simply confirms the obvious.  Historic flooding has halted crop harvest and damaged crops.  

Comments from Cooperative Extension Service Parish Agents:

“Flooding rains last week caused major damage to many crops and displaced a lot of cattle.” – Frances Guidry, Jefferson Davis Parish

“Historic rainfall over last weekend occurred across south Louisiana. Rice harvest was well on its way to being complete but halted by rain. Rice heads sprouting are being reported. This will also reduce the amount of acreage for second crop. Some soybeans throughout the parish were completely submerged underwater while others remained high and dry. Water was slow to drain so the impact on how the soybeans will be affected will be noticed within the coming days and weeks. Pastures conditions went down fast. All of the rain and flooding created conditions where pastures were turned into lakes for a period of time.” – Jeremy Hebert, Acadia Parish

“It rained just about every day last week totaling about 6-8 inches. Some rice that was mature in the fields is starting to sprout. Some fields have water backing up on them from the bayou's overflowing and can’t be drained. Some soybean fields are waterlogged also. Hay pastures are needing to dry to cut for only the second time. Tough week for area farmers.” – Jimmy Meuax, Calcasieu Parish

“Had over 15 inches of rain spread over 4 days and it continues to rain. Work in field is slow.” – Reed Himel, Terrebonne Parish

“Periodic rains continued during the past week. Many fields remain flooded. Sugarcane planting and soybean harvest is still delayed. Producers will need several days of dry, warm weather before they will be able to get back in the field.” – Mariah Simoneaux, Saint James and Assumption Parish

“Flooding in low lying areas from over 28 inches of rain put homes and farmland underwater. While some areas are starting to dry out, some fields have been submerged for over a week and will take additional time to drain. Continued showers are compounding the problem. Ripe rice that lodged is sprouting in the water and growers are struggling to drain fields and salvage the remainder of the crop. Rice growers are expecting to have lost at least 40 % of their yield potential. At least 25 % of the soybean crop has been lost. Sugarcane growers are expecting to have lost at least 3% of the cane that was already planted. Some cane is still standing in water and growers fear that yield may be impacted. Sugarcane growers are starting ripener applications this week in preparation for the start of grinding around Sept. 22nd. Bee producers lost up to 50 % of their hives. Cattle producers in low lying areas lost some calves, hay and had to relocate cattle to higher ground.” – Stuart Gauthier, Iberia Parish

Click here to read the full report