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Record-high diesel prices hitting farmers, truckers hard

A farmer works the field.
A farmer works the field.(25 News / Heart of Illinois ABC)
Published: May. 9, 2022 at 9:55 PM CDT
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PEORIA (Heart of Illinois ABC) - Diesel prices hit an all-time high Monday, continuing to hit drivers of all kinds hard.

AAA says the price of diesel fuel averaged $5.54 nationwide Monday, the highest such mark ever. The average in Illinois is currently $5.25.

“It’s kind of a no-win situation,” one Canadian trucker said.

“Illinois used to be one of the cheaper diesel prices out there, and now it’s one of the more expensive ones,” another trucker from Georgia said.

Those record prices also couldn’t come at a worse time for farmers, who rely on diesel-powered farm equipment to till their fields at this crucial point in the year.

“A farmer that’s farming a thousand acres... Is probably spending $10,000 more dollars,” Peoria County Farm Bureau Manager Patrick Kirchhofer said.

Kirchhofer says prices for diesel have doubled since last year. For many, it’s a cost they have no choice but to accept, at the risk of their own harvest.

“Timing at this point in the season does mean dollars that will be harvested in the Fall with larger crops,” Kirchhofer said.

Kirchhofer adds that corn and soybean prices are good right now giving farmers a chance to recover some of those losses in the Fall.

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