South Georgia farmers still recovering from Hurricane Michael

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COLQUITT, GA. Thousands of people across the Panhandle were affected by Hurricane Michael, farmers lost not only their crops but hundreds of thousands of dollars.

When Hurricane Michael came through it destroyed everything in it's path including all of the crops. Kristen Traugh is one farmer who had to rebuild her land from the ground up.

Colquitt, Georgia, a small town right outside of Blakely where you would find Saorise Farms and Kristen Traugh. A farmer still recovering from Hurricane Michael, one year later....

"And the peanuts were inverted prior to the hurricane and well the wind rows were scattered all over the field and we did get out there and try to clean that up but we calculated that we lost about one ton of peanuts per acre," farmer at Saorise Farms, Kristen Traugh said.

During the fall and winter months farmers are planting cover crops, repairing machinery, and preparing for the next planting season.

But on October 10th those tasks were never completed.....

"We didn't have a day to day routine after the hurricane hit, so much of our time was spent just cleaning roads so that we could get to and from the farm and to different fields and even to check on neighbors," Traugh said.

Farmers had to improvise to get back on track as the hurricane put them behind schedule. But Traugh continues to stay hopeful.

"Well thankfully insurance helped a lot but we still need to show a profit at some point. last year we had a great growing season, we were hoping to play catch up from what we lost the year before with Hurricane Erma and that didn't happen so maybe it'll happen this year," Traugh said.

But how important are these crops to the community?

"There's a statistic that all of the peanuts grown in the United States are grown within one hundred mile radius of Dothan, Alabama. and of course last year with hurricane Michael the eastern side of that radius was slammed and that really affects us and that trickles down into the local economy as well," Traugh said.

Traugh has not received any disaster relief payments from the damages of Hurricane Michael.

So all they can do now is wait....

"I do hope we hope that we will get some assistance from the USDA and I do hope also that the public realizes that we aren't out here asking for a hand out. this is money we lost out of our own pockets, many of the banks around here are suffering as well, this is a matter that really affects everyone in our small towns," Traugh said.

Traugh says they just received disaster relief payments from Hurricane Erma that hit in 2017.

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