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Drought's Impact On Some Businesses Delayed?

September 24, 2012, 5:33 AM by Austin Hoffman

Drought's Impact On Some Businesses Delayed?
PARKER, SD -

Talk to nearly any farmer right now and they'll tell you they're not getting anywhere close to what they should be for this fall's harvest. But many businesses in rural South Dakota rely on those farmers to put money in their cash register to pay the bills.

It's no secret that this has been an extremely tough year for producers. But one business owner we talked with says fortunately, they're still spending money.

"As of this time I can’t say that it's really affected my business that much yet," Jim’s Farm and Sporting Supply owner Jim Kasten said.

Kasten has owned Jim's Farm and Sporting Supply in Parker for 11 years. He says it’s been a fairly common year. But if farmers can't put money in the bank this fall, next year could be a different story.

"I think everybody is going to be a little more skeptical with what the outlook is as far as the farm industry goes that unless it starts raining they are really going to start conserving with what their needs are, what their future spending is," Kasten said.

To him, the key to making it through a summer like this is giving people many reasons to come through the front door. At one time, his business was strictly a feed store; that's all changed.

"Now I have added fishing line, I've just added a trapping supply, your pet foods. As a business man on Main Street in a small business you have to be versatile and see what else is out there that you might be able to make a dollar at," Kasten said.

But now he just hopes the skies open and next summer the ground gives birth to new life.

"If the rain does not start pretty quick I'm sure that you're going to see a lot more cutbacks," Kasten said.

Kasten says he also added silage tarps to his shelves this year. And with the amount of silage that was cut, he says it was a very good investment.

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