DES MOINES, IOWA, US — A derecho storm on Aug. 10 battered an estimated 10 million acres of farmland and millions of bushels of grain storage, Reuters reported.
“Many farmers and agribusinesses experienced damage to crops, grain bins and buildings as severe storms tracked across the state this morning,” said Mike Naig, Iowa agriculture secretary, on Aug. 10. “My thoughts are with everyone who was affected as they begin clean up.”
The hurricane-force wind downed corn across the state, and it is unknown how much of the crop will be able to harvest in the fall. Agronomists told Reuters that replanting is not an option as corn harvest usually begins in September or October.
According to the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) Crop Production 2019 summary report, Iowa’s corn production was estimated at 2.58 billion bushels in 2019. The report noted, Iowa has led the United States in corn production for the last 26 consecutive years.
It is unclear how this last storm will impact Iowa’s corn output.
Early assessments predict the storm either destroyed, damaged or impacted tens of millions of bushels of commercial grain storage and on-farm storage bins, Reuters reported, citing Naig. The loss of storage options may challenge producers for the upcoming fall harvest.
According to USDA’s NASS, Iowa’s on farm storage capacity was 2.10 billion bushels as of Dec. 1, 2019. The state’s off-farm storage facilities capacity was 1.51 billion bushels, making Iowa’s total storage capacity 3.61 billion bushels.
The storm also affected several ADM Idaho facilities. On Aug. 11, the company announced on Twitter that its Des Moines and Cedar Rapids facilities were without power and unable to unload and load. While its Clinton, Iowa, facility was able to receive corn and loading product but only with manual tickets.
The Des Moines facility was able to resume operations on Aug. 12 and began to unload and load.