Ongoing drought conditions across Manitoba have a coalition of farm groups urging producers to know their options when making decisions about their crops.
Manitoba Beef Producers (MBP) and Manitoba Forage & Grassland Association (MFGA), along with Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP), Manitoba Crop Alliance (MCA), Manitoba Bison Association (MBA) and Manitoba Sheep Association (MSA), are warning that ongoing drought conditions pose a significant challenge to livestock, grain and forage producers.
“With drought conditions reported across Manitoba, we recognize the detrimental impacts across the crop and livestock sectors,” said MCA chair Fred Greig. “Producers need to know their options so they can make the best business decision for their operation.”
Before making decisions about drought-damaged crops, the coalition is asking producers to contact Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation (MASC) about putting crops to alternative use.
“Successive droughts in some regions of the province have taxed livestock producers’ ability to secure feed, so being able to source alternative feed and roughage sources is critical,” said MBP president Tyler Fulton. “Producers with damaged crops should consider salvaging as much feed as possible.”
There are resources to help producers determine the value of a crop harvested as silage or greenfeed. Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development (ARD) provides information regarding the cost of production for grain and silage crops, forage supply management, pricing for baled forages and piled silage and the value of straw as a crop fertilizer.
As the challenging growing season continues, the coalition is reminding producers to consider their mental health and the mental health of others.
“From a stress perspective during these challenging times, producers should be mindful of their ability to look out for themselves, their neighbours and their community,” said MFGA chair Larry Wegner. “Talking to someone like a neighbour or friend is a great pressure release and opens the door for more conversations that may be necessary, including using mental health resources designed to support producers.”
The Manitoba Farm, Rural & Northern Support Services (MFRNSS) provides free, confidential telephone and online counselling to producers. MFRNSS is available 24/7 by calling 1-866-367-3276 or visiting www.supportline.ca.
The coalition is working with ARD and MASC to identify programs to support producers through this challenging time.
Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP) is Manitoba’s general farm policy organization, providing
a unified voice for farmers on issues that affect agriculture. KAP works with governments, industry and stakeholders on overarching issues that affect all farmers.
Manitoba Crop Alliance (MCA) is a non-profit organization established August 1, 2020 representing over 9,000 farmer-members. Manitoba Crop Alliance puts its farmer-members first and strives to continuously improve the competitiveness and profitability of all crops represented by the organization by focusing on four main areas: research, agronomy, market access and development and communications.
Manitoba Bison Association (MBA) represents 80 Bison producers with over 14,000 Bison in the province. Our producers care about the health and well-being of their animals as well as the environment. Bison are considered a keystone species and many of the native plants and animals in the Northern Great Plains evolved with Bison and the impact they had on the landscape. Bison are nature’s original plant-based protein.
Manitoba Beef Producers (MBP) is the exclusive voice of the beef industry in Manitoba, representing 6,300 producers across the province. The mission of MBP is to represent all beef producers through communication, advocacy, research, and education—within the industry and to governments, consumers and others, to improve prosperity and ensure a sustainable future.
Manitoba Forage & Grassland Association (MFGA) promotes the economic prosperity and environmental benefits of forages, grasslands, cover crops and healthy soils to benefit our forage and grassland producers, local communities and society.
The Manitoba Sheep Association (MSA) is proud to represent over 400 sheep and lamb producers (both commercial and purebred producers) across the province. Our mission is to actively initiate, support and conduct programs and activities designed to stimulate and improve the well-being of all segments of the sheep industry in Manitoba.
For more information:
Graham Schellenberg, Communications and Government Relations Coordinator
Keystone Agricultural Producers
firstname.lastname@example.org | 431-554-8352