'It's a really bad time': Farmers battle inflation, drought

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Monday, June 27, 2022
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Farmers are scrambling this year and consumers are making difficult decisions at the grocery store.

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- New research from Consumer Brand Association shows 72% of Americans say increased prices have affected their households budgets.

Sara Keller of Fayetteville said it has been hard seeing higher prices in grocery stores, then figuring out ways to cut corners and save a few cents where she can.

"We used to buy stacks of potatoes, and now we're having to do instant (potatoes)," said Keller. "We do a lot of store-brand food now, which we didn't in the past. We're just a little more conscious of what we're buying."

William Gillis, a farmer, is conscious that he likely won't be getting a good return on his investment this year.

The weather has been too hot and dry. His corn is not growing as it should.

"Everything is just held way back," said Gillis. "This time of year, (the stakes) would be over my head."

He has about 1,000 acres stretched across Cumberland and Robeson counties.

Gillis said about half of his crop is permanently damaged.

He's praying for rain to save what he can during these difficult economic times.

"It's a really bad time. It's never a good time to have a drought. This year especially, the whole confluence of events that have happened. Inflation -- our input costs are so much higher this year," said Gillis.