End to Drought Could Come in ... October

Corn, soybean prices reach record highs
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 20, 2012 6:40 AM CDT
End to Drought Could Come in ... October
A grasshopper sits on a dried leaf on a stalk of corn in a field near Edmond, Okla., Thursday, July 19, 2012.   (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

The worst drought in decades shows few signs of letting up; in fact, it could stretch through October and get even worse, according to weather officials. Following the hottest half-year ever recorded, "we don't have a reason for saying it's going to improve," notes one. "Even if temperatures went down 5 degrees and rainfall increased 50% for the rest of this month ... it's not going to reverse the decline in crop conditions and the ultimate yield," adds an Iowa climatologist.

The only glimmer of hope is tropical activity in the Gulf of Mexico that could offer rain in some southern areas, notes the New York Times. Some 70% of the Corn Belt was suffering from drought conditions as of the week ending Tuesday. Corn and soybean prices have already set records, while wheat prices are at a four-year high, Reuters notes. And federally backed farmers' insurance could end up salting the wound for consumers: It could be in farmers' best financial interest to report complete crop losses instead of trying to salvage what's left, further slicing supply. (More drought stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.