The string of hot, sunny days might slow you down if you have to spend time outdoors, but it’s speeding up the growth of New Jersey crops.
New Jersey Farm Bureau President Ryke Suydam farms in Franklin Township, Somerset County. He says Jersey-grown tomatoes, sweet corn, and other crops are growing fast and furious now and there’s should be a plentiful supply.
He says the hot weather means many farmers are having to irrigate their crops.
“I have an expression, you can’t pump sunshine, but you can pump water. And in heat like this, yeah, you’re using a lot of water to get your crop going. But everybody is anxious. People are going to the beach. They want a watermelon, they want the tomatoes, the want the sweetcorn.
And yeah we got to irrigate, and New Jersey products are responding well.”
Suydam does not expect that irrigation costs will push up produce prices.
“We anticipate that we got to irrigate. Always have. Always will. So I don’t think the heat is going to affect the cost of the product. It might actually bring it down because it’s going to be coming in fast and furious.”
Suydam says locally-grown squash is abundant and farmers are now picking peppers, eggplant, cucumbers, sweet corn, peaches, and blueberries and it won’t be long before tomatoes start to ripen.
He admits it’s tough spending a lot of time working outdoors in the hot weather. He says farmers are coping by taking more breaks and drinking plenty of water.