July 23rd, Ottawa – The Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) is encouraged to see yesterday’s announcement of support for farmers facing extreme weather as droughts continue to affect farmers across Canada and especially in the Prairie provinces. These are important steps in what needs to be a comprehensive response to such a dire and widespread situation.
The Minister announced several initiatives in Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s press release, including:
- Livestock tax deferral for prescribed drought areas
- Bilateral adjustments to AgriInsurance program to make drought damaged crops available for feed
- AgriRecovery assessments
- Drought-stricken provinces can invoke the late participation provision of AgriStability
“CFA is glad to see this kind of support offered, recognizing further steps are required to deliver a comprehensive AgriRecovery response and ensure these measures are appropriately targeted. We must also take this opportunity to once again urge provinces to adopt the federal proposal to increase the AgriStability compensation rate from 70% to 80%, to ensure farmers have adequate support in the face of such potentially catastrophic conditions” said Mary Robinson, CFA President.
“These are the exact situations in which these programs are expected and needed to perform, and as extreme weather events become more common it is imperative to have a strong base of support to limit the need for ad hoc responses during times of crisis,”
CFA would like to stress the need for timeliness in regards to the AgriRecovery assessments, and the need for them to be done in close consultation with producers. Continued monitoring of this situation will be required to determine if further steps are required.