May 11, 2012 – Ontario is working with producers to assess the damage, determine the implications and develop strategies to help farmers cope.
Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Ted McMeekin, toured a Beamsville orchard recently to see firsthand the weather damage affecting Ontario’s apple and tender fruit crops.
“I know how much this loss means to the farmers involved, and not just in economic terms,” said Ted McMeekin, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “I will continue to closely monitor the situation as we work to assess the damage and develop strategies that will best support the industry.
Early estimates suggest widespread damage to the Ontario apple crop as a result of frost hitting trees already in blossom. Other crops that are reporting significant damage include pears, cherries, peaches, nectarines, apricots and plums. Apple orchards in Georgian Bay and Southwestern Ontario are expected to suffer the greatest damage.
The full extent of the province-wide impact will be known in coming weeks. Ontario offers a number of business support programs available to producers to help offset any losses.
Supporting our farmers and agricultural industry is part of the Ontario government’s plan to create jobs, grow the economy and provide Ontario families with healthy, local food.