Half of North Dakota’s Corn is still in the field. USDA calls it “on-farm storage”

ROLLETTE, ND - Driving through Rollette County, North Dakota in mid-January, there are places the corn can be seen popping out of snow drifts piling up on the edges of the field. Squares of brown, unharvested fields dot the otherwise white, flat landscape. That corn wasn’t supposed to be there at all. It should have been harvested by October. “USDA calls that ‘on-farm storage’,” Ryan Pederson said, laughing as he drove past his unharvested corn.

#AgAlerts: Farmer suicides; unharvested corn; meatpacker rules; bees

For decades, farmers have been engaged in an epic battle of David vs. Goliath, farmer vs. meatpacker. Just a handful of companies—including Tyson, JBS, and Cargill—control over 80 percent of the meat market. These companies set the price farmers and ranchers receive for their animals, and often work together to ensure that they stay low.

Drought continues in the High Plains, while Midwestern farmers see rainfall extremes

In South Dakota, one of the nation’s top wheat producing states, nearly 75 percent of the spring crop is in poor to very poor condition, according to the report. In North Dakota, the nation’s second largest wheat producer, 40 percent of the spring wheat crop is in poor to very poor condition.