Many districts throughout Alberta, mainly central and southern, have called for an “Agricultural Disaster”. The MD of Bonnyville is saying that they are not ready to declare that just yet. In fact, The MD states rain came at the right time to help crops.
Janice Boden, Assistant Agricultural Fieldman, with The MD of Bonnyville says, “crops are coming in.” Boden says it has a lot to do with the heavy rainfall The MD has experienced over the past week, “we got rain at the right time for them to start showing the seed.” “At this time, I would say we’re doing okay,” Boden continues, “we’re doing better than other municipalities and districts.”
One area that is hurting this year is forage fields, Boden explains, “what hit us the most is the forage field, so cow feed will be a problem this year.” Boden guesses that hay will go up, “hay prices will probably be four or five times this year.” Hay is looking good up north, says Boden, “I was in the ASB Summer Tour in Grand Prairie and hay is looking very good up there.” “You usually share throughout Alberta,” explains Boden, “I’ve heard of some coming up from The States.” But that’s also a matter of cost.
“It’s just farmers are having to pay the price for it,” Boden explains everything costs more right now, “transportation costs, fuel price, everything is going up.” Seeing as hay is scarce Boden has heard of it costing as much as $200 a bushel, “normally you’d pay $50.”
“It’s probably not the first time we’ve dealt with tough forage years,” which leads farmers to plan ahead, explains Boden, “our farmers put a little bit in the bank.” Last year was a great year for forage, Boden says the MD will be okay, “as much as we may suffer, I think The MD of Bonnyville is going to be a little luckier, a little better off than many areas.” The Municipal District of Bonnyville is not at the point where declaring an Agricultural Disaster is necessary.