May 29, 2020 Weekly Newsletter -
This is the fifth issue of our weekly news update. For most relevant COVID-19 updates and resources, please visit the COVID-19 section of our webpage.
Message from the Chair of the British Columbia Chicken Marketing Board
From the desk of Harvey Sasaki
The Ministry of Agriculture sponsored an AgriStability webinar for the chicken sector on May 26th. The chicken industry has been able to navigate its way through the COVID-19 pandemic reasonably well, with limited impacts to date. That being said, given the experience with processing plant closures this spring and the potential for a second wave of outbreaks later this year raises the risk profile for chicken growers. Unlike Avian Influenza, COVID-19 is a human health, not an animal health issue, meaning that the inability to process chicken will not trigger compensation under the Health of Animals Act nor will it cover the costs of on-farm euthanasia. The potential loss of revenue as well as the cost of on-farm euthanasia and disposal can be covered under AgriStability. The AgriStability Program provides a low cost option to protect your farm against this potential risk. Information on the program is available by contacting the program via email at agristability@gov.bc.ca or by calling 1-877-343-2767. The Board encourages you to ensure that you have thought about and have taken necessary measures to manage the potential risks to your farm presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Harvey
Industry News
AgriStability Application Deadline Extended to July 3, 2020
BC chicken growers are eligible to apply for for a business risk management tool called AgriStability. AgriStability protects farmers from declines in their net farming income due to increased costs of production., market conditions, and/or production loss. Payments are made if a grower's current year margin falls more than 30% below their reference margin.
Youth Employment and Skills Program
The Youth Employment and Skills Program provides a wage subsidy to employers who hire youth for agricultural jobs. The program offers support for 50% of wages to a maximum of $14,000. Additionally, the program offers 100% of costs for relocation to a maximum of $5,000 if the employee must relocate for the position.
Employers can apply on or after May 26, 2020 for their project to be considered.
Poultry Industry Resources
AgSafe BC have developed document templates for risk assessments and infection prevention and control protocols. related to COVID-19. for different agriculture sectors. The documents can be downloaded as a WORD file and adapted to meet the needs of your operation.
101 - 32450 Simon Avenue
Abbotsford, BC V2T 4J2
604-859-2868