APAS calling for relief for livestock producers affected by widespread feed shortage

The Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan has asked the federal government for a 2018 Livestock Tax Deferral Program for all Saskatchewan producers who cannot feed their livestock due to lack of feed and poor pasture conditions.

“Two extremely dry years have left some of our producers with no choice but to sell some of their herds because hay is not available and feed costs are too high,” APAS President Todd Lewis said in a press release.

The Livestock Tax Deferral provision allows farmers who sell part of their breeding herd due to drought or flooding in prescribed drought or flood regions to defer a portion of sale proceeds to the following year.

APAS is asking for the program to be available to all affected producers in Saskatchewan, without special designated areas of the province.

“We’re hearing from our members that shortages are widespread across most of Saskatchewan,” Lewis explained. “Despite the fact that some rain did fall earlier this year, the showers were extremely spotty and there are very few areas with a surplus to make up the difference. The hay shortage and dry pastures are still dire enough to force the sale of livestock.”

Lewis added that affected producers would benefit from knowing whether they are eligible for the Livestock Tax Deferral Program as soon as possible, rather than closer to the end of the year, when the government usually makes that decision.