If you’re like me, one of the reasons you enjoy the warm months of the year is because of the fresh produce you can eat. In fact, one of my favorite meals in the summer includes some corn on the cob. It’s also a great reminder of the farmland we have here in Ohio, as well as how huge agriculture is to our economy.

Even though we have the occasional rainfall or thunderstorm, more than half of Ohio is currently under some level of drought. Aside from the lack of water, the high temperatures have made things worse, with little moisture coming out of the ground.

It’s unfortunate to have drought conditions this time of year because of the critical stages crops are in for reproduction and pollination. The dry conditions hinder some of our state’s most important crops and our area farmers end up with yield loss, which translates into income loss.

With not as much production in an economy supported by agriculture, there will not be as much money flowing in and through rural communities like those in our region of the state, because there are not as many crops to sell.

The effect of drought conditions pushes grain prices up, and it ultimately pushes food prices up. We are all affected, and the problem is not just grain. Dry conditions and high temperatures also cause problems for livestock, including stress that leads to illness and respiratory problems that have to be addressed. I expect that we could see higher food prices through the fall season.

In order to keep crops stable, many farmers have to irrigate around the clock using our precious supply of water. This increases both electric and fuel bills quite a bit.

It’s important that during dry and hot spells like we have seen in Ohio lately that we are conserving as much water and energy as possible. Not only will this help to keep the bills in your own household down, but it helps to ensure that there is plenty to go around, especially to those who most need it.

By aiding farmers and other important occupations that provide important goods for our citizens, we are benefitting the whole community, and I hope that you will take this to heart. We must do what we can to help out.

In the meantime, I will be closely monitoring Ohio’s drought conditions and continue to work alongside officials at the Department of Agriculture and Department of Natural Resources to ensure that we are coping with our environment as best we can.

If I can be of any assistance to you during this time period, please don’t hesitate to contact my office.


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