Fruit & Vegetable Magazine

Governments of Canada and PEI provide support to potato industry

July 19, 2019  By PEI - Department of Agriculture and Land

Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, on behalf of Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, and Prince Edward Island Premier Dennis King, were at Wilfred MacMillan & Sons’ farm today to announce new support for Island potato growers under the AgriRecovery Framework.

The 2018 Canada-PEI Fall Harvest Recovery Initiative will provide up to $15.6 million to assist affected producers with the extraordinary costs related to excess moisture and cold temperatures during the 2018 fall harvest.

Through the initiative, financial assistance will be provided to producers for the extraordinary costs relating to harvest recovery, additional field work, and storage and recovery, including costs associated with cleaning and disinfecting storage facilities.

“We are lucky to live in Canada, which is a country rooted in agriculture and also the province of Prince Edward Island, where many Islanders that depend on the potato industry for their livelihood. Canada, with the support of our Province, have the National Agri Recovery Framework in place to ensure farmers can continue to farm and grow our food, even when these unimaginable conditions happen to us,” said Jason Hayden, chair of the PEI Potato Board.

Additional information about the initiative will be available through the PEI Department of Agriculture and Land, and will enable producers to mitigate impacts from the extreme weather and effectively continue their operations.

“Our potato growers are a vital part of the farm landscape and the economy on Prince Edward Island. I am pleased to be able to work with the PEI government to help our potato and horticultural producers recover from the severe conditions they faced last fall and get their businesses back on track. Farming can be a very difficult career at the best of times, so I’m so pleased to be able to provide this much-needed support for our farmers after such a tough season,” said Minister MacAulay.

AgriRecovery is a disaster relief framework that is part of the suite of federal-provincial-territorial (FPT) Business Risk Management (BRM) programs under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. It is intended to work together with the core BRM programs to help agricultural producers recover from natural disasters.

Potatoes are the primary cash crop on the Island and PEI continues to be the largest potato-producing province in Canada, growing one-quarter of the potatoes in the country. The province exported over $400 million in seed, fresh and processed potato products last year – over half of total agricultural exports for PEI.

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