Agriculture officials to assess Mo. drought - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Agriculture officials to assess Mo. drought

(KFVS) -

Governor Jay Nixon has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Farm Service Agency (FSA)  to survey all 114 Missouri counties to see the extent of damage the extreme heat and drought conditions have had on crops and livestock.

The governor says hay is already in short supply, impacting livestock farmers and that the head and drought will likely cause crop yields to decrease.

The State of Missouri offers a hay directory for farmers looking to buy hay for their livestock. Those selling hay are encouraged to list themselves on the directory, it can be found through the state web site, MO.gov.

The governor's request for damage reports is the first step in the process of declaring counties primary disaster areas. Primary disaster counties are those that lose at least 30 percent of the estimated yield of a single crop, or individual farmers suffer production losses of more than 30 percent.

A disaster designation would mean eligible farmers could be considered for assistance from the FSA. Farmers who qualify would receive emergency loans. Farmers would apply to the FSA, which considers each application individually. Farmers in counties near the primary disaster areas could also be eligible for assistance.

As the damage assessments move forward, more information will become available about applying for assistance.

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