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Ag Industry Gets New Supports from Province

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Farming
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New financial supports for the agriculture sector were announced by the provincial government on January 18 in Brandon.

“Farmers are the backbone of our province,” said Premier Heather Stefanson. “They work tirelessly every day, often in very difficult conditions, to feed the world. They are business owners, innovators, and leaders, and they are key contributors to our provincial economy.”

Stefanson and Agriculture Minister Derek Johnson were on site for opening day of the Manitoba Ag Days Show, a three-day event, hoping to connect with ag producers and visitors.

Agribusiness has faced some difficult challenges in recent years, Stefanson pointed out, including the pandemic, which led to high ag input costs and debilitating supply chain disruptions.

Adding insult to injury, these challenges were worsened as farmers faced a 2021 drought followed by excessive moisture in 2022.

In response to these weather extremes, the Manitoba Agriculture Services Corporation will increase the dollar value of Excess Moisture Insurance coverage for 2023 to $75 for basic coverage. Higher coverage options will also be available of $100 and $125 per acre.

As well, the province has created a short-term rent reduction plan for forage leases on agricultural Crown lands. Beginning in 2023, farmers will see a 50 percent rent reduction which will slowly drop down to 15 percent by 2025.

To assist ag producers in adapting to changing climate conditions, the province has developed an online platform called the Environmental Farm Plan which integrates national and international sustainable sourcing standards. As well, it renewing its commitment to the 4R Nutrient Stewardship, a science-based nutrient management framework.

The Western College of Veterinary Medicine will also be beneficiaries of some additional funding this year, with the anticipation that it will address the critical shortage of large-animal veterinarians in rural areas. The extra funding will provide space for five additional students into the veterinary program each year.

“A thriving and sustainable agricultural sector is important to Manitoba’s economic growth and prosperity,” said Johnson. “I extend my appreciation to our producers for leading the way in sustainable agriculture and growth across the sector, and for their ongoing efforts to build on this sector’s significant contributions to our province.”

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