Central Alberta farmers face delayed spring season amid COVID-19 challenges

If the devastating economic impacts COVID-19 weren’t already enough, at least one crucial Alberta industry is being dealt another blow.

The pandemic impacts plus a late spring are causing significant delays for farmers who had hoped for an early start.

“It’s too wet. We can’t even get the seed drills out — they’re in snowbanks,” farmer with Inland Park Farms Ken Farion said.

“It’s going to be a hectic spring for a lot of farmers.”

Farion said much of the neighbourhood has a lot of harvest left.

While a late spring is cause for concern, it is just one more issue in the midst of this pandemic.

“Farmers are obviously looking at commodity prices and the global impact COVID-19 is having on agricultural products,” Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Devin Dreeshen said.

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“But I’ve heard from every type of farmer across the province that the province declaring agriculture an essential service and working to make sure that the border remains open has been greatly appreciated by the agriculture and farming community.”

While there is still much uncertainty across the globe, Dreeshen said the government is offering support.

As for Farion, he will press on as he has for the past 45 years.

“Some of the challenges are great learning experiences and you just learn to adapt,” Farion said.

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