Drought relief program expanded for Manitoba livestock producers under AgriRecovery framework
The Canada and Manitoba governments are continuing to support livestock producers by expanding the eligibility of allowable expenses of the Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program. Today, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau and Manitoba Agriculture Minister Derek Johnson announced the addition of extraordinary expenses producers incurred in accessing feed, water, and pasture, as part of the program, to address the challenges faced throughout the drought in 2021.
Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, the Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program was established to help producers purchase and test feed for livestock to maintain their breeding herds, including transporting purchased feed from distant locations.
Many producers obtained feed and maintained their herds through baling extra acres, renting extra pasture, hauling water, and taking other extraordinary actions. Among the added eligible extraordinary costs now covered are expenditures related to accessing additional crop or pasture acres, temporary fencing for supplemental grazing, hauling water, harvesting extra acres or hauling self-produced feed from distant locations.
Eligible animals under the Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program include breeding animals of beef and dairy cattle, horses raised for pregnant mare urine, sheep, goats, bison and elk. Producers must be supporting a minimum of 10 animals to qualify for assistance and the program covers feed, feed transportation, and related extraordinary expenses incurred between June 1, 2021, and March 15, 2022.
The Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program has already processed more than 1,000 claims, with new claims accepted on an ongoing basis until the deadline of April 15, 2022.
The Government of Canada and Manitoba will continue to work in collaboration to support farmers during this challenging period to ensure they have access to the necessary resources to maintain competitiveness.
“Canadian producers have stayed strong and resilient as they took care of their land and animals, while facing natural disasters. Our governments recognize the need to adjust risk management programs to support them. By expanding the eligibility criteria of allowable expenses under AgriRecovery, we are helping Manitoba producers get feed to their herds and move forward through this challenging period.”
– The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
“Manitoba producers care deeply about their livestock and these programs will help producers recover from the drought and plan for the 2022 growing season. Since the program was first introduced in August, industry stakeholders advised that producer response to drought changed slightly from what was first anticipated. We recognize that producers need additional help with these other extraordinary expenses to recover from the drought of 2021 and today’s announcement addresses that expressed need.”
– Derek Johnson, Minister of Manitoba Agriculture
“Manitoba Beef Producers thanks the federal and provincial governments for listening to our concerns about how to make the programs more reflective of the many different types of strategies producers have had to use to source critical feed and water resources for their livestock. These important additions will better address the wide array of extraordinary costs arising due to the drought, and will help mitigate some of the negative financial impact it is having on producers.”
– Tyler Fulton, president, Manitoba Beef Producers
The Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program complements the two other AgriRecovery programs being offered to producers. The Herd Management Drought Assistance program helps producers to replace breeding animals culled due to drought.
The Livestock Transportation program offers assistance to producers with extraordinary costs to transport breeding animals of beef cattle, sheep and goats to alternate locations to feed, up to 1,000 km. Both programs are part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership agreement, with funding shared on a 60-40 federal-provincial basis.
Under the Canada-Manitoba AgriRecovery Drought Assistance program, the Government of Canada is investing up to $93 million and the Manitoba government is investing $62 million to cover eligible extraordinary costs, for total program funding of up to $155 million.