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Province Announces Steps To Help Livestock Producers

The Manitoba government is undertaking a number of steps to help farmers affected by the dry conditions earlier this summer.
 
Agriculture Minister Ralph Eichler announced on Monday that the province is requesting that Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation (MASC) look at deferring loan payments for six months. MASC loan payment deferrals would be for all direct loans with a review of the uptake before the end of the six months to possibly extend for another six months to a year for deferrals.
 
MASC will be providing loans and financing for the purchase of calves with a minimum weight of 400 lbs using livestock as security. Loans are repayable when the livestock are sold or to the end of the loan term which is 18 months for feeder animals and 12 months for breeding animals, whichever comes first.
 
MASC will provide direct loans for breeding stocks to ensure there's a special provision. Purchase of bred heifer to assist with cash flow and help align principal payments with cash flow. Direct loans with the purpose of purchasing bred heifer have an option for an additional six months of interest only payments.
 
AgriStability - The interim payment is 50 per cent. Eichler says the province has the authority from the federal government to raise that to 75 per cent. currently producers enrolled at AgriStability can apply for an advance up to 50 per cent of the expected AgriStability benefits for 2019. Eichler notes that this is a cash advance, so if there is an over cost that has not allowed for the AgriStability, then that money will have to be paid back.
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