Yel­low­head County de­clares a State of Agri­cul­tural Dis­as­ter

The McLeod River Post - - Family, Farm & Garden -

With nu­mer­ous crops still sit­ting in fields due to ex­ces­sive mois­ture this grow­ing sea­son, Yel­low­head County Coun­cil de­clared a State of Agri­cul­tural Dis­as­ter.

The num­ber of acres un­har­vested and the ex­tent of the dam­age within Yel­low­head County has prompted Coun­cil to join with their neigh­bour­ing mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties to de­clare a state of agri­cul­tural dis­as­ter.

“There are many years where grow­ing con­di­tions are per­fect for farm­ers to have a highly pro­duc­tive sea­son – this, un­for­tu­nately, was not one of them,” said Yel­low­head County Mayor Ger­ald Soroka.

New data from re­cent crop re­ports have shown that many Yel­low­head County agri­cul­ture pro­duc­ers have been heav­ily im­pacted by the con­sis­tently wet con­di­tions this year. Many crops are still sit­ting un­der snow as there was never an op­por­tu­nity for farm­ers to har­vest their crops.

Based on crop re­ports the fol­low­ing judg­ments have been made: ce­re­als are ranked def­i­nite dis­as­ter as 50 per cent of the crop is still in the field. Oil seeds crops are 24 per cent in swath and 21 per cent stand­ing, again ap­proach­ing def­i­nite dis­as­ter thresh­olds. Hay crops are cut and baled over most of the County; how­ever, much of it is sit­ting in the field as they can­not re­move the bales due to sat­u­rated soils.

“Our coun­cil has made this de­ci­sion to de­clare a state of agri­cul­tural dis­as­ter to help bring aware­ness to this sit­u­a­tion,” said Soroka. “This de­ci­sion came af­ter we re­ceived in­put from our Agri­cul­tural Ser­vices Board, lo­cal pro­duc­ers, and is based on re­search done by our staff us­ing the lat­est data from crop re­ports and vis­ual in­spec­tions.”

“We are en­cour­ag­ing the prov­ince to re­view ex­ist­ing sup­port pro­grams with an aim to en­hance or cre­ate new pro­grams and to pro­vide timely as­sis­tance to pro­duc­ers.”

Yel­low­head County will send a let­ter to the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment about the dec­la­ra­tion of a state of Agri­cul­tural Dis­as­ter and re­quest a dis­as­ter re­cov­ery pro­gram and sup­port pro­grams be avail­able to ad­dress this is­sue.

File Photo The McLeod River Post

“Our coun­cil has made this de­ci­sion to de­clare a state of agri­cul­tural dis­as­ter to help bring aware­ness to this sit­u­a­tion,” said Soroka. “This de­ci­sion came af­ter we re­ceived in­put from our Agri­cul­tural Ser­vices Board, lo­cal pro­duc­ers, and is based on re­search done by our staff us­ing the lat­est data from crop re­ports and vis­ual in­spec­tions.”

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