NSFA COLLECTS INFORMATION TO LOBBY FOR DISASTER RELIEF
As Atlantic Canada digs out from another storm, Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture continues to collect information from farmers who have experienced losses caused by this year’s winter weather. As of March 22, the estimated cost of damage to agricultural structures from snow is well over $3,000,000. Damaged structures include greenhouses, livestock barns, maple sap collecting systems, and machine storage buildings. The cost of mitigating snow damage is not included in the estimated damage costs.
“The extent of the damage to farm structures has been significant this winter,” says Chris van den Heuvel, NSFA President. “Damages aren’t isolated to one region; they are spread across the entire province.”
The feedback from the industry wide survey will be used to advocate on behalf of farmers for financial support from government. This is one of the many issues that NSFA is addressing for the farm community. Earlier this year, NSFA asked farmers to submit feedback on rural road conditions in their area. NSFA will also be opening up an online reporting and comment form as part of their website restructure.
“Like everyone else, we’ve spent money and time ensuring that the snow is cleared from our farm buildings. The repeat storms of snow, wind, and rain have made clearing the farm more difficult than usual,” says Ralph Ballam from Ballam Farms Ltd. in Shubenacadie, who lost two barns from snow buildup.