South Florida farmers are hoping for a life line following the deluge of precipitation that has recently swamped the region.
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam, Congressman Carlos Curbelo, and Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez met with several Miami-Dade County farmers to discuss the adverse effects of recent flooding on agriculture in the area.
The three officials also urged USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack to issue a Secretarial Disaster Determination for all counties in South Florida affected by recent flooding.
“Farmers in Miami-Dade County have suffered considerable losses due to recent flooding in the area, and Congressman Curbelo, Mayor Gimenez and I ask that USDA Secretary Vilsack issue a Secretarial Disaster Determination in order to assist these farmers,” Putnam said.
According to the National Weather Service, this year’s extra strength El Niño climate pattern will contribute to a wetter and stormier dry season across much of Florida. So far, this seems to be the case.
Miami-Dade County’s overall agriculture production generates more than $1.6 billion in annual economic impact and supports more than 11,000 jobs. Initial damage assessments include that producers have experienced 60% to 70% losses.