TILLER, Ark. – From gas to groceries, prices on just about everything are going up. There’s one group that’s been hit especially hard, farmers.
The current average for regular unleaded gas is $4.54 while the price of diesel is $5.32. Wes Kirkpatrick owns a farm in southeast Arkansas and says he typically spends about $10,000 per week in fuel. That has now doubled to about $20,000.
Gas prices aren’t the only increase, Kirkpatrick said fertilizer and crop protection products have also gone up.
This comes after a rough year for farmers in southeast Arkansas. Flooding one year ago caused more than $200M in crop damage.
“Well its a bigger hurdle for us because what we lost last year because of the flood event, we’re going to have to make up for that as well this year,” Kirkpatrick said.
He said high costs just adds to the pressure to produce a good crop this year.
“As long as the commodity markets stay high to overshadow the increases of what it costs for us to farm and we make a crop every year, it can be survivable but there’s a lot more stress because there is a lot more at stake as well,” Kirkpatrick said.
He said it all comes down to weather. They want rain, but not too much. They can also irrigate to make up for lack of rain, however, that means they will use more fuel increasing their costs.