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Drought Relief Support Top Priority For New Ag Minister

The immediate priority for the province's new agriculture minister Ralph Eichler will be to develop drought relief support for hard-hit farmers and ranchers.

Eichler replaces Blaine Pedersen, who announced his retirement from cabinet on Thursday.

Eichler commented on the drought situation.

"We need to partner with the federal government and municipal governments and producer groups, commodity groups, in order to ensure we get the programs that are going to work. Certain parts of the province, very few, are not really in too bad of shape, but others are in dire situation. Not only drought, we have grasshoppers," he said. "I know Minister Pedersen did reach out to stakeholders last week and asked for feedback on suggestions. I will be reaching out to Minister Bibeau early on...I'm going to try and respond as quickly as possible, so our government can be at the table to assist and put programs in place and carry on the good work of Minister Pedersen."

Eichler previously served as agriculture minister from 2016 to 2019.

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