Minister tours fields in Morinville

Agriculture and Forestry Minister Oneil Carlier doing a field tour in Morinville with Merle Jacobson, Chief Operating Officer, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation (AFSC) on Tuesday afternoon.
– Lucie Roy Photo

by Lucie Roy

Provincial Agriculture and Forestry Minister Oneil Carlier conducted a field tour with Merle Jacobson, Chief Operating Officer, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation (AFSC), with respective staff Tuesday afternoon.

Minister Carlier said the Morinville area farm was the third he had looked at, the other two being in Westlock and Smoky Lake.

Carlier said the Morinville area field was probably the worst of the three. “It is spotty,” he said. “This is probably the worst we have seen, but even down the road, we can see one canola crop different from the other one. A lot of it is business practices the farmers have done. Have they reseeded it, and all that, a lot of things are considered, not just moisture, but moisture is the biggest issue or lack there of.”

Jacobson had a similar opinion of the field. “Those that had showers are not too bad,” he said. “This farm had very little rain. I think this is where if I see each farmer individually to make sure we are responding best to their particular circumstances it is better rather than trying to deal with people in general.”

The purpose of Tuesday’s tour was to get an overview of what the area is like so as to get a better understanding of what farmers are going through, and all the programs that work and respond.

Jacobson said they tried to pick the areas that were the worst and North West Edmonton has some of the worst areas.

Looking at the wheat, Jacobson said there was a little bit of stooling as the three stems came from one seed, but it should be seven or nine coming out of one seed. Most of the heads are empty.

“This is basically dying, not ripening, and this is beginning of August,” he said. “If this would be the third week of August maybe more ripening naturally rather than dying from drought.

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