Lohr: Farmers need action on crop losses

Progressive Conservative Agriculture critic John Lohr today questioned the Minister of Agriculture about why the McNeil Liberals have delayed essential support for farmers.

Lohr asked Minister Colwell about why the Liberal government didn’t make asking the federal government for funding from the AgriRecovery program an urgent priority.

“The McNeil Liberals don’t seem to understand that farming requires long term planning, and that delays can be very expensive for the families who feed this province,” says Lohr. “The Minister needs to act quickly to support our farmers in the next crop season.”

A similar request was made following the frost damage to crops in June 2019. However, the AgriRecovery program suffered low uptake due to a very short application window. Lohr says that farmers can’t operate off last-minute planning by this government.

“This year, Hurricane Dorian and prolonged cold and wet conditions in the spring and fall of 2019 caused significant damage for Nova Scotia farmers,” said Lohr. “Some farms are reporting losses in the hundreds of thousands, while others are facing shortages of feed for livestock.”

Lohr says that the Minister and Department of Agriculture have been working on a timeline that’s convenient for their Liberal government, instead of a timeline that meets the needs of farmers for crop seasons.

Lohr is disappointed in the $10 million drop in the Department of Agriculture budget for 2020, which seems to indicate no disaster relief planned for the coming year.