Is Climate Change Real? Ask Michigan Potato Farmers Like Those Near Big Rapids
There has been a constant discussion on whether climate change is real but if you ask a Michigan potato farmer, they will have a definite answer for you.
I have hunted, fished, shoveled snow, mowed the grass and have spent a lot of time out of doors my entire life and from my experiences, things involved with climate are different from now from when I was a kid. Plus my dad has grown a garden my entire life in Michigan and over the years because of the climate, some adjustments have had to be made.
According to WOOD, crop storage has become a problem over the last several years right here in Michigan and experts say it is a direct effect of climate change. Crop storage is often something that gets over looked when discussing the subject of climate change but it's something farmers in the mitten state have been battling with.
Coming up as a kid, there was never a November where there wasn't snow, especially by firearm deer season. I remember shoveling snow to make extra money to buy Christmas presents and some extra skiing money during the holiday break. Since growing up and in the last twenty years, I have not had to shovel any snow in November except one time back in 2000. I haven't had to remove any snow in December as well so something is different.
Michigan is the countries leader in growing potatoes that are used to make potato chips. Heck, I can think of four potato chip companies that are based right here in the state: Better Made, Downey's Potato Chips, Great Lakes Potato Chip Company and Uncle Rays.
WOOD reported that Mecosta County potato grower Brian Sackett has had to purchase several refrigeration units to supplement the ventilation fans on his farm where he stores the potatoes.
Back in the day, Michigan is known for having cool enough air to store potatoes for months and it was much easier to keep them fresh. In the last few decades temperatures have risen making storing them more difficult. Using fans are not enough anymore and refrigeration systems have been added to the process.
With the change in climate, soon all potatoes, apples and peanuts will have to be stored in some kind of refrigeration system and that cost will be passed on to the consumer.
We all may wan to pay more attention to what the scientists are saying, they specialize in these studies of climate change and really know a lot more than politicians.