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U.S. Farmers Brace for Inflation as Highs of Crop Rally Wear Off

  • Farms grapple with higher costs for fertilizer, fuel and rent
  • Growers look to do business differently to combat price hikes
A picker loads corn into a wagon during a harvest at a farm in Lansing, Michigan on Aug. 12.
A picker loads corn into a wagon during a harvest at a farm in Lansing, Michigan on Aug. 12.Photographer: Emily Elconin/Bloomberg
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Minnesota farmer Jason Knopik didn’t sell corn earlier this year as prices soared, missing out on one of the biggest rallies in a generation. Now he’s grappling with inflation.

Knopik held back as lack of rain put the fate of his plants into question. His drought-stricken fields have seen less than 10 inches of rain since planting in May, almost 40% below normal, and it’s so arid the creeks on his land dried up that he’s had to truck water to his cows. Knopik’s corn and soybeans survived, but he’s now getting hit with soaring costs for fertilizer and propane on top of a nearly 30% jump in rent.