Crop loss estimated at $2.5 million

Published 10:36 am Friday, October 8, 2010

Sixty percent of Hertford County’s tobacco crop stands unharvested and the “golden leaf” was swamped by last week’s heavy rain, resulting in nearly $371,000 worth of damage. Staff Photo by Cal Bryant

The report is in and the news isn’t good.

Following five consecutive days of rainfall last week, where totals were reported up to 24 inches, Hertford County farmers experienced crop losses in excess of $2.5 million.

The report, made public on Thursday afternoon, estimated total crop losses in the county at $2,518,253.

As expected, cotton was affected the most by the heavy rainfall. The reported cotton crop loss, spread out over 13,729 acres, was estimated at $1,129,637.

Damage to 4,000 acres of peanuts in the county was estimated at $705,600.

Less than one-half of the county’s 2,895 acres of tobacco was harvested prior to the storm’s arrival. It was estimated that 1,737 acres of tobacco was unharvested, leaving a projected loss of $370,720 to that crop.

Soybean losses were estimated at $312,296. Hertford County farmers combined to plant 13,346 acres of that crop this season.

The report also revealed approximately 110,000 Perdue chickens were lost due to the weather.

Additionally, the repair estimate for drainage pipes, roadways, and ruts in washed through fields was $30,000.

Brian Saunders, USDA-NRCS; Matt Lowe, Gates County Soil & Water Conservation District; and Paul Smith, NC Agricultural Extension Service, prepared the report.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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