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New grain dryer program for farmers hit with tough harvest

Posted on June 25, 2020 by admin

A new grant program is now available to help grain farmers upgrade their grain handling systems. 

The Efficient Grain Dryer Program is funded through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership and will help cover costs for eligible grain dryer improvements. Applicants will be able to choose equipment that makes sense for the size and volume of their agri-business and improve energy efficiency within their operations.

“I have a deep appreciation for the efforts being made by Canadian farmers to care for the land and environment. It is their legacy to their children. A sixth generation farmer recently told me, ‘if you don’t care for the land, you’re not in business.’ We all know how hard 2019 was for many farmers, and that weather is increasingly unpredictable. Our government is listening and finding solutions for farmers,” said Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

The program will be retroactive to April 1, 2018 to accommodate almost 100 applicants who have been waiting since that time and for those who may not have known about the program and purchased eligible equipment in the last two years.

“Last harvest was one of the toughest for Alberta farmers. Poor weather, trade irritants, rail strikes and a carbon tax have all hurt farmers through no fault of their own. This new program will help farmers remain competitive and keep producing the best high-quality food in the world,” said Devin Dreeshen, Minister of Agriculture and Forestry.

• $2 million dollars is available under the Efficient Grain Dryer Program.

• The Canadian Agricultural Partnership is a five-year, $3-billion commitment by federal, provincial and territorial governments that supports Canada’s agri-food and agri-products sectors.

• Eligible expenses will be cost-shared, with 50 per cent funding from the grant and 50 per cent funding from the applicant.

• The 2019 crop season was challenging for many Alberta producers. 

– The season started with a dry spring and with variable weather over the summer. There was a lack of rainfall in the southern and eastern parts of the province and the extreme northern Peace Region, for example, and a long spell of cool, wet weather in other parts of the province.

– Cold temperatures, snow and excess moisture in most parts of the province in the fall resulted in a long challenging harvest for crop and forage producers.

• Based on the final Alberta Crop Report dated Dec. 3, about 10 per cent of crops across Alberta were left in the fields to be harvested in spring 2020.

– Unharvested crops varied widely across the province – about two per cent remained in the fields in the southern region, seven per cent in central and northwest Alberta and 13 per cent in the northeast. In the Peace Region, about 32 per cent of crops were left to be combined in the spring.

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