While families enjoy the fall-like weather at Country Corner in Alpha, Illinois, Pumpkin Farmer Bruce Curry is out in his fields doing what he calls 'pumpkin thumping.' He knocks on each pumpkin to see if there is a hollow sound. If there isn't, that's trouble. It means the pumpkin is rotten on the inside.
Across the country, the harvest could be down as much as a third and it's all because of the heavy summer rain in the region. The rain splashes mud and bacteria onto the plants, making holes in the skin and causing some to rot from the inside out. This year alone, Curry says he's lost around 20 percent of his crop due to heavy rain this summer. He says there's only one thing to do.
"Experience tells me I better get on the phone and call my friends like I've done," said Curry. "I already have pumpkins coming in."
He says he will sell all the pumpkins he has and replace the crop he's lost by buying pumpkins from the Wisconsin area.
"I would love to be able to not have to go purchase pumpkins and sell my pumpkins instead of buying 20 percent more, but when you're in this business, that's part of it," said Curry.