At some point in the last two weeks the final shoe dropped on the western Canadian growing season. Yes, there are pockets of decent crop, but there are also areas of no crop — none — where what exists for a meagre standing crop is already being taken for forage to stretch feed supplies for the cow herd.
Here at RealAgriculture, we've been discussing the "worst-case scenario" for several weeks. What does that look like? Total crop failures, herd and flock liquidations, and appeals for disaster assistance and hay donations.
And here we are.
Farmers and ranchers are resilient, supportive people, and we know there are many of you who want to help if you can (and likely still more of you who don't want to ask). We are working closely with several organizations and groups who are working on a Hay West program, and we'll have details in the coming days. What's more, we'll also be working hard to keep tabs on what changes are announced to crop insurance for salvage feed, contract buyout negotiations, and federal and provincial disaster programs.
In the meantime, this is a reminder that you're not alone in this. If you or someone you know is struggling under this extreme stress, there are resources to help.
- Lyndsey Smith