FACT CHECK: Does This Video Show Ukrainian Farmers Harvesting Crops From A Burning Field?

Anna Mock | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook purportedly shows Ukrainian farmers attempting to harvest grain from a farm as a fire set by Russian troops spreads. 

Verdict: False

The video was filmed in Michigan, not Ukraine.

Fact Check:

Millions of tons of Ukrainian crops are currently stuck in the country as the war with Russia rages on, according to The New York Times. While some exports have resumed, the world is still suffering from an unprecedented food crisis as a result of the war, the World Food Programme reports.

The Facebook video claims to show Ukrainian farmers harvesting grain in a field after Russian shelling set part of the field on fire. Tractors can be seen harvesting the unburned crops as the fire spreads. (RELATED: Did A Ukrainian Farmer Capture A Russian Military Jet?)

“Russia is deliberately shelling Ukrainian fields in order to destroy crops and cause food shortages,” the post’s caption reads in part. “There’s not always much time and equipment to put out the fire, so Ukrainian farmers harvest grains right in front of the fire, competing with the flame to get the crop first.”

While Russian artillery strikes have reportedly destroyed Ukrainian grain fields within the last month, according to Bloomberg, the video’s caption is incorrect. A reverse image search revealed the original clip was posted to YouTube July 18 where it is titled, “Wheat Fire.” 

“A fire started while the farmers were harvesting this years wheat crops,” reads the video’s description. “There were no injuries or loss of farm equipment. Crop loss is unknown. Location: Crystal Road and Spencer Rd, Crystal Township, Montcalm County, Michigan.”

A Montcalm County firefighter confirmed in an email to USA Today that the video was filmed in the location listed by the YouTube video.

This is not the first time Ukrainian farmers have been the subject of viral misinformation. Earlier this year, Check Your Fact debunked a viral image that appeared to show a Ukrainian farmer towing a rocket with a tractor.

Anna Mock

Fact Check Reporter

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