The Government of Saskatchewan has responded to the Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association’s request for drought assistance.

Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister David Marit announced July 14 that Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corporation (SCIC) will implement measures to address dry conditions impacting producers. Effective immediately, changes will be made to allow low yielding crops to be put to alternate use to support the livestock sector.

“Our livestock sector is facing tremendous challenges sourcing feed, as well as some challenges in securing access to sustainable, quality livestock water sources,” Marit says. “Agriculture is a vital part of our provincial economy and we are taking steps to support producers through this extended period of dry, hot conditions.”

Marit adds that he wants to encourage grain producers to work with neighbouring livestock producers to make feed available and that SCIC is working with customers to ensure damaged crops, intended for harvest, can be put to an alternate use such as silage, baling, or grazing.

When the appraised yield of a crop falls below the established threshold level, the yield is reduced to zero and in response to the feed shortage this year, SCIC is doubling the Low Yield Appraisal threshold values for customers who salvage their cereal or pulse crops as feed, without negatively impacting future individual coverage.

The Government of Saskatchewan is also making changes to the Farm and Ranch Water Infrastructure Program (FRWIP) for dugouts, wells, and pipelines. Presently, under FRWIP, costs related to dugouts, pipelines, and wells are funded at 50 per cent of eligible costs, to a maximum rebate of $50,000 over the life of the program.

For the period April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022, the maximum rebate will increase to $150,000. The first $50,000 will be based on a 50/50 cost share and the remaining $100,000 will be on a 70/30 government/producer cost share.

The province has also requested from the federal government to designate the entire province as eligible through the Livestock Tax Deferral program, for all Saskatchewan producers who may need to liquidate part of their breeding herd due to feed or water shortages.

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