The South Dakota Department of Agriculture wants drought disaster relief ideas from farmers and ranchers who have struggled with this year’s extreme drought.
It’s a matter of determining how the state can best help producers through the effects of the drought, said Walt Bones, South Dakota’s Secretary of Agriculture.
“In a big picture, are we doing what we need to do, are there some gaps that we need to fill,” Bones told Brownfield Ag News on Tuesday evening from his farm near Parker, South Dakota.
Hearing producer’s ideas first-hand is the best way to help generate action to get the state’s number one industry back on track, said Bones.
“We have our own things that we can do, private enterprise has things that they can do,” said Bones, “and with this collaborated effort, hopefully we can mitigate and lessen some of the severity of what’s been going on out here all summer long.”
Agriculture generates nearly $21 billion in annual economic activity and employs more than 80,000 South Dakotans, according to the South Dakota Department of Agriculture.