Two hits for farmers mean strawberries could cost more this season
PONCHATOULA - The Louisiana Strawberry was hit hard by two floods in 2016 and it could mean higher prices for the popular fruit in the coming months.
"They've had a significant.. loss," Ag Commissioner Mike Strain said. "[Tangipahoa] is the center of strawberry production," he said, and many farms were flooded in March and again in August.
"They've been hit twice."
Strain will discuss the crop loss in an upcoming trip to Washington, D.C., with the governor.
Strain said farmers were preparing for the upcoming strawberry planting season when record rainfall in August flooded farmland, destroying top soil. Many farmers start planting strawberries in September and can harvest some crops by Thanksgiving. Peak season is usually in March and April, but premium prices for strawberries are seen in November, December and January.
But, it's not just strawberries. Almost every crop was damaged by the flood, Strain added. It's too early to tell what the flood event could mean to crawfish.
Agriculture is a $13 billion industry in Louisiana. The farming industry employs about 275,000 people.
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