How will the Drought of 2012 play a role in your life?

The Drought of 2012 is going to be long felt. Everyone has been talking about it since the beginning of summer. And the big question is - "Will there be enough corn to go around?"

For those of you who are removed from the family farm, it may not seem like a big deal to you; but actually this drought is going to hit you just as hard as it hits the farmer.

Take a second and think of all the things corn and its by-products go into. Here's just a few you may not have thought of - your instant coffee you make every morning before running out the door, the chewing gum you pop to pass the afternoon, or how about the beer you pour while watching your Sunday night football game. Or what about your aspirin, toothpaste, and the adhesive of tape. These are products we use every day and you can count on seeing their prices in the store to go up.

But before you panic, you should know Wisconsin Farmers will bounce back.

Heather Schlesser, the dairy agent for UW-Extension Marathon County, says, "Droughts are a part of nature. This one is similar to the one we had in 1988. It means you just need to be more fiscally responsible if you can. Watch your pennies at the market place."

This is not the first time Wisconsin, and the rest of the Midwest of that matter, have had a face to face battle with Mother Nature and her Drought. If we look back a the records six growing seasons - 1936, 1976, 1980, 1983, 1988, AND 2002 - have been labeled as significant drought years in the corn belt (facts from the National Corn Growers Association).

To fight back, many farmers are getting creative. They are using different parts of plants to make feed for their livestock. An example would be instead of just feeding the corn kernels they are grinding up the entire corn cob to give their animals more roughage.


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