Cattlemen, other Ohio farmers worry as drought spreads

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Most of Ohio is under a moderate or severe drought, and that coupled with a late spring freeze has left farmers dealing with reduced yields on corn, small fruit, vegetables and hay.

The freeze reduced most hay yields by as much as 50 percent in late May, when the season’s first culling usually takes place, said Elizabeth Harsh, executive director of the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association. Pasture is also scarce, she said.

That’s sent many cattlemen scrambling to buy hay and other feed as worries grow among of a shortage this winter.

“The south and southwestern parts of the state are really feeling it,” Harsh said, referring to the drought. “Ironically, that’s where most of our beef producers are.”

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