March 21, 2024 (Regina, SK) - Following the unveiling of Saskatchewan's 2024-25 Budget, the Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan (APAS) acknowledges the substantial investment in the agriculture sector while underscoring the critical need for proactive measures for drought preparedness and collaborative efforts among stakeholders.

“APAS welcomes the $570.6 million investment in the agriculture budget, representng a $22.4 million increase from the previous year,” said Ian Boxall, APAS president. “This funding is pivotal for bolstering Saskatchewan's agricultural sector, contributing significantly to its resilience and growth.”

APAS applauds the increased funding for risk management programs, and additional measures such as freezing Crown land grazing rates and providing lease discounts. These initiatives offer essential stability to producers facing various risks, especially during challenging times.
The need for continued collaboration between government and agricultural stakeholders to ensure effective program utilization and policy development reflective of producers' needs, particularly concerning drought preparedness, will continue being a focus going forward for APAS.

Furthermore, APAS recognizes the significance of strategic initiatives like the addition of 38 weather stations and programs such as Irrigation Development and Efficiency, essential for long-term sustainability and productivity.

“Investing in 38 additional weather stations is a positive step, but it falls short of adequately covering Saskatchewan's vast agricultural landscape,” emphasized Boxall. “We continue to advocate for an expanded network of weather stations to provide timely and accurate information crucial for decision-making by producers and crop insurance programs.”

However, APAS expresses disappointment that the budget did not signal progress in working with farm groups and producers to develop a yield cushioning program for those facing multi-year drought and crop yield declines.

“SCIC currently applies the cap after two consecutive years of below 70 per cent average production. Alberta supports yield cushioning for any year yields fall below 70 per cent,” explained Boxall. “There are many farmers experiencing multi-year production losses far below their normal yields and are now faced with increasing premiums and reduced coverage – a challenging situation for farmers.”

APAS remains commited to advocating for policies prioritizing the long-term sustainability and resilience of Saskatchewan's agricultural sector. We eagerly anticipate working with the government to continually enhance Saskatchewan’s agricultural sector, supporting the success of farm and ranch families.

For media inquiries, please contact:
APAS Communications
Brook Thalgott