(UNDATED) - Purdue Extension officials say the drought and high heat in Indiana is having a devastating impact on farmers and crops.
Agricultural Economist Chris Hurt says it's the worst drought since 1988.
Hurt says if current conditions continue, Indiana stands to lose some 200 million bushels of corn. Hurt says Indiana is the fifth largest corn and soybean producing state, but has suffered the worst drought damage thus far.
Hurt says the losses will have ripple effects throughout farming communities and on food prices for all Americans. Purdue officials are estimating that crop losses will affect food prices. They say losses along with other factors could help move food prices up by three and a half percent this year alone. They say food prices are already inflating higher than family incomes.
Farmer Don Villwock of Vincennes says he stands to lose about 50 percent of his corn crop.
Officials say the soybean crop has a better chance, only if the drought and high heat don't persist through August. They say Indiana needs measured, prolonged rainfall of about six inches to get current crops back on track. However, they say current conditions have already done irreparable damage. They also say that if current conditions continue, the resulting crises will restart the food vs. fuel ethanol debate.
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