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Ohio farmers: It will take years to recover losses from rain

PERRYSBURG (AP) — Farmers who have been unable to plant their soybeans and corn because of this spring’s never-ending rains told Ohio’s governor on Wednesday that it will take years to recover their losses.

They also said the impact will be felt throughout the agriculture industry and could result in higher prices in stores. Dairy operations, fertilizer dealers and farm equipment sellers will feel the squeeze too.

“The ripple effect will be huge,” said Gov. Mike DeWine, who last week asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to issue a disaster declaration that would make aid available.

DeWine told farmers after surveying swampy and weedy fields near Toledo that he plans on sending another letter to the Trump administration with more specific requests about easing rules that could help farmers.

Crop insurance will keep most farmers from going under, but it’s not designed to cover such widespread losses, farmers told the governor.

Since the beginning of April, many areas of northern and central Ohio have seen rain on more than half of those days, according to the agriculture department.

Many corn and soybean growers in the Midwest are far behind on planting, and it’s particularly bad in northwestern Ohio, where some say it’s looking more likely that they won’t plant much of a crop at all.