GREENE COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - Hurricane Irma is now racing against rice farmers as they are working seven days a week harvesting their crop before winds could cause major damage.
According to Carlos Eason with Eason Farms in Greene County, the wind is their biggest concern because it has potential to knock down mature rice stalks.
"When it blows down, you lose yield when trying to harvest it," said Eason. "It is harder on the equipment and the quality goes down as well."
Eason said they were fortunate that they were not affected by Hurricane Harvey but seeing as though that will be a different story for them Tuesday with Irma, they are working as hard as they can.
"If it were not for this hurricane, we could wait a little longer to harvest it," said Eason. "With this threat, we have been working overtime just in case so hopefully it will be minimal damage."
Eason said though they are pushing the limits with getting the crop out of the ground quicker, it is worth it when faced with the economic impact the storm could have if they didn't act on what they can.
"You lose your profit," said Eason. "That is why we are rushing because we want to get it before it blows down. If we get 30 to 40 mph winds, a lot of this stuff will blow to the ground and it's hard to get through the machine."
Eason said if the winds were to have an effect on their crops, they have at least harvested 20-25% of their rice by the end of Monday.
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