Saskatchewan’s crops are almost beyond help: Stewart
Lack of moisture contributing to current crop conditions
By Diego Flammini
Assistant Editor, North American Content
Harvesting is only beginning in Saskatchewan, but early indications are that the crop conditions are poor, according to provincial Minister of Agriculture Lyle Stewart.
“Generally speaking, this crop is too far advanced to help now,” Stewart told reporters Wednesday, according to CBC.
The latest provincial crop report indicates lack of rain and high temperatures has had significant impact on fields, especially in the south.
“For some producers in the south, crops are rapidly drying down and any rainfall now will come too late to be of benefit,” said the report, which summarized the period of July 25 to 31.
Producers are also concerned the dry conditions could lead to increased fire risk as harvest continues.
The growing season started out promising for producers, so to see the conditions change against their favour is equally disappointing.
“Farmers don’t want to grow poor crops,” Stewart told reporters. “Especially when you see a crop start out real good and look beautiful and then go downhill. That’s hard.”
Canola could be the hardest hit crop, Stewart added.
“It’s surprising it’s as good as it is, but I think it’s maybe half a crop,” Stewart told reporters, according to CTV.
Insurance adjusters are beginning to visit producers applying to write off parts or their complete crop.
Stewart told reporters he’s asked the federal government to allow producers to defer income taxes to another year. He’s awaiting a response.
And Saskatchewan’s farm-stress telephone service is dealing with farmer concerns.
The service received 59 calls in July, triple the number from last July, according to CBC.