Hurricane Irene caused serious losses to North Carolina tobacco and food crops and could drive some farmers out of business, the state agriculture commissioner said Aug. 29.
The extent of crops and livestock lost will not be known until later, but the arrival of Irene at the start of crop harvest season was the worst possible timing for most farmers, Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler said.
“There are going to be some crops that are a total loss in some areas,” Troxler said.
Poultry and hog farms, many of them large production centres for the nation, lost power to their poultry and hog houses, cutting off crucial ventilation and cooling systems. In some cases, backup generators were flooded.