Erratic weather affects Georgia peach farmers
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. —
In the summer of 2016, the Chattanooga area was in an "extreme drought." The summer of 2017 brought more than 8 inches of rain before the end of July. NewsChannel 9's Meteorologist Bill Race says that now, these storms are going to hold off.
At the The Chattanooga Peach Festival on Saturday July 9th, some Georgia peach farmers say that these changes in weather patterns have affected their crops.
Pam Hazelrig of Hazelrig Farms says that this season has been the worst that she has seen in 32 years. After what she describes as "buckets and buckets of rain" and "a mild winter" that did not allow enough chill hours for peaches, Pam says that her supply is short.
Another farm claims that they were one of few farms in Southeast Georgia unaffected by the weather. Alexandra Makarov says that Fitzgerald Farms actually benefited from the rain when it comes to their reducing spending with their irrigation system. With a full supply of peaches, the farm expects to sell "at least 85 crates" of peaches in a single day at the market.
Pam of Hazelrig farms says that the short supply actually has customers coming to their table early. The table sells out of peaches weekly. According to Pam, there is nothing farmers can do when it comes to this type of weather except work through it. She says it all comes with the job.
"We know in the business we are in, you know, its a gamble, We are dependent on the weather and there are so many factors we are depend on you just gotta work through it."