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Home / Articles / Boulderganic / Environment Today /  A dry run from hell: Drought hits the smallest farms the hardest
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Thursday, July 19,2012

A dry run from hell: Drought hits the smallest farms the hardest

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.com
There is something distinctly pathos-inducing about a corn plant dying of thirst. Maybe that’s why coverage of the 2012 drought has focused on commodity crops, especially corn. Reading the reports, you almost expect Tom Joad to step out from between the brown-baked stalks, as if Steinbeck were writing the copy.

For non-commodity farms — a category that includes many diverse, organic, and locally supported operations — the story is about much more than maize. A month into summer, the drought has walloped small Midwestern farmers, the very same farmers already struggling to survive a weak economy, a market dominated by rapacious agribusinesses, and oh yeah, climate change.

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