(NewsNation) — Corn farmers across the country are busy planting.
Chris Edgington, a third-generation farmer in Iowa and president of the National Corn Growers Association, expects there’ll be an ample supply of corn at the end of the year. This is despite some struggles with Minnesota and North Dakota getting too much moisture.
“A lot of times, we worry about not enough,” Edgington said.
But he’s nervous about fall. That’s when farmers start running combines, and use twice as much diesel fuel as they do earlier in the year, Edgington said.
Diesel fuel prices have skyrocketed this year, and they’re continuing to go up at a record pace.
According to AAA, the average cost for a gallon of regular gas is more than $4 a gallon in all 50 states. It’s even more for a gallon for diesel. As of Friday morning, prices were above $5.50.
That causes challenges for farmers, who use diesel as their main fuel source for equipment.
“We can get diesel from a lot of different places, different refineries, different pipelines, but there can definitely be an opportunity for shortages,” Edgington said. “We definitely are concerned about it.”
There have been several factors — inflation, the war in Ukraine — people have pointed to as reasons for high diesel prices. From his experience, Edgington said, they are cyclical.
“We had fuel that was $150 a barrel a while ago, and then it came all the way down to $40, $50,” he said.
Right now, Edgington doesn’t know how long these surging diesel prices will last.
“This will not be short,’ he said. “That’s about my best answer….They will ramp up, more supply, more drilling, more production. It will help but there’s no quick fix. There really isn’t, so yeah, I definitely think we’ve got a year or two in front of us on this.”