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Propane Shortage In Midwest Could Affect Harvests

Eric Schmuttenmaer, Flickr

MANKATO, Minn. (AP) – Demand for propane to dry crops has spiked, leading to problems distributing the fuel to farms across the Midwest.

A report cites two factors contributing to the shortage: unusually wet crops and simultaneous harvests that are normally staggered through the fall.

Farmers get better prices for crops that are below a certain level of moisture. Without enough propane to remove excess moisture, farmers are likely to leave their crop in the field until they can get more of the fuel. That won’t necessarily hurt yield but it raises the risk of having to harvest in snow season.

Propane distributors say the supply is good, but there’s just a short-term distribution problem. That can happen when too many farmers are trying to harvest at the same time.

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