Peanut Harvest Low Due to Drought - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Peanut Harvest Low Due to Drought

  Vernon Peanut Co. is usually busy this time of year, but the drought has business slower than usual.

"We're looking at probably a 20-30% decrease from what we're accustom to," says Craig Gaines.

Gaines works as a manager at the peanut company, a business that takes in farmer's crops, dries and stores them and then distributes the product to manufactures.  He says that due to the extreme heat and dry dirt conditions most farmers aren't even harvesting their fields yet.

"Normally were pretty busy already and we've only got two producers that are bringing peanuts in currently and it's been pretty slow," Gaines says.

And the peanuts coming in are less mature than they should be.

"They're going to be lower grade this year, lower quality.  There's a lot of things that are just going to effect their bottom line and all of that is directly related to the drought and the heat stress," he adds. 

That means the peanuts could bring in less money.

"It's going to effect it somewhere down the line.  Customers that can't be taken care of, manufactures or whatever from lower production numbers," he says.

With this years production projected to be less than most years, he says we could see more of the drought's effects on the Texas peanut production even into next year.

"It's going to give us a higher price for next year, I'm almost certain.  On the other hand I feel like a lot of people wont plan peanuts next year," Gaines says.

Taelor Rian, Newschannel 6.

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