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Drought Impact Felt in Farm-Related Industries (Aug 24, 2012)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The economic impact of the ongoing drought that's devastated much of Oklahoma's cotton crop is starting to be felt in farm-related industries.

A farm machinery dealer says his business stands to lose millions of dollars. A board member at a cooperative in southwest Oklahoma says the cotton gin has laid off one person and has not hired the 20 to 30 seasonal workers it usually employees during the cotton harvest.

Some farmers say any rains that fall now would come too late to save the cotton crop, which is grown primarily in southwestern Oklahoma

The current U.S. Drought Monitor shows 90 percent of Oklahoma in extreme or exceptional drought. The monitor rated much of the western half of the state as in exceptional drought - the worst category.

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