March 20, 2019

Agriculture Continues To See Strong Budget Support

The Ministry of Agriculture’s budget will increase three per cent in 2019-20 to $391.3 million, ensuring programming to support the success of farmers, ranchers and agri-businesses continues.  The budget fully funds business risk management programs and sustains investments in agricultural research.  This will encourage our agriculture sector to continue to grow.

“This provincial budget provides a stable foundation for Saskatchewan’s farm and ranch families with increases to the right programs and services,” Agriculture Minister David Marit said.  “This budget provides program enhancements and continued investment in research.”

In response to feedback from stakeholders and producers on the Pest Biosecurity Program introduced last year, funding to the Rat Control component of the program will increase by $350,000 to $1.25 million.  This increased funding will be directed to grants paid to rural municipalities and First Nation bands, to cover the cost incurred for rat inspections and bait.

The 2019-20 Budget contains $271.9 million to fully fund business risk management programs offered under the federal-provincial Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP), including Crop Insurance, AgriStability, AgriInvest and Western Livestock Price Insurance.

The Crop Insurance program includes a number of enhancements for 2019-20, including higher coverage on tame and native grazing land to better reflect the losses producers experience during a shortfall in forage production.  Approximately 30 million acres are anticipated to be insured under Crop Insurance this year.

The government continues to invest $31.9 million in agricultural research, with funding for research projects, demonstration and adoption of new technologies.  The research funding is part of the $71.2 million that will be invested this fiscal year into strategic programs under the five-year CAP agreement.

This budget continues to support a number of industry organizations, with funding for groups that include Agriculture in the Classroom Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan 4-H Council, and Farm and Food Care Saskatchewan.  These organizations, among others, help build trust in agriculture, develop future leaders and support a sustainable industry.

Saskatchewan’s agriculture sector is an important part of the province’s diverse economy.  Producers harvested a crop of more than 35 million tonnes in 2018, the sixth consecutive year the provincial harvest has been more than 30 million tonnes.  Saskatchewan’s 2018 total agri-food exports were $13.4 billion, an increase of more than 60 per cent since 2010.