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British Columbia farmers face the double pain that leads to higher costs of feeding animals.

Farmers already find it difficult to get hay, and if they can find someone they are willing to sell, they are paying about 20 to 40 percent more than usual.

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The rise in grain prices due to the prairie drought, followed by the heat dome, and the devastating floods in BC have wiped out both stored and field crops, pushing up animal feeding costs. This means higher consumer prices for meat. And dairy products.

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As the war in Ukraine disrupts the critical fertilizer supply chain, farmers face yet another challenge of using commodities to increase production.

Sylvain Charlebois, director of the Agri-Food Analytics Lab at Dalhousie University, says he is analyzing the increased costs of meat and dairy products. “There is a lot of uncertainty and instability. As a result of the conflict in Ukraine, the cost of raising livestock can increase and prices can rise further.”

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He said the predictive vote for the March 16 strike by Canadian Pacific Railway employees should also be noted as it could affect fertilizer and grain delivery costs.

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Jason Vanderveen, who has helped his family run a long-standing business at Sally-based Vanderveen Hay Sales, said these trends are likely to affect prices next year.

Farmers already find it difficult to get hay, and if they can find someone they are willing to sell, they are paying about 20 to 40 percent more than usual.

New hay is usually harvested in late May or early June. Usually, the market has a lot of hay that goes on, but this year, Vanderbean is “quite confident” that it will be depleted before that.

“It’s not normal,” he said.

Brothers John and Jason Vanderveen are the owners of Vanderveen Hay Sales in Langley.
Brothers John and Jason Vanderveen are the owners of Vanderveen Hay Sales in Langley. Photo by Mike Bell / /PNG

Julia Smith, a farmer who has a ranch raising pigs and cows near Merritt, sucked hay all winter, but was all lost in the mid-November floods.

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Her regular animal feed shipments, which were supposed to be delivered the day after the flood began, arrived just a few weeks ago.

She “looked around (hay) from other sources,” but buying in much smaller quantities means she was paying 60% higher than expected.

“I usually buy 6-8 tonnes at a time, so if you have to go to a feed store and buy in a 30-pound bag, it’s not at all economical,” said Smith, who is also the president of Small. .. Association of Scale Meat Producers.

She said that at least cows would be able to go out to eat grass as spring approaches, but “without the grain to feed the pigs, we can’t put it on the grass.”

“Some people are thinking that they can’t find hay.” Can I feed $ 500 per ton of hay until the turnout in May (when new hay becomes available)? If so, how does that affect my bottom line?

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She said the cost of hay in the past was about $ 210 per ton.

She raised selling prices, but even if it rose 50% from last year, it was difficult to keep up with the rising costs.

“I have the highest price out there, but I checked again, and it’s not going to lower it,” Smith said.

Casey Pruim, a dairy farmer in the Abbotsford region who is a board member of the British Columbia Dairy Association, said grain costs increased by about 30% due to severe droughts in the prairie.

Dairy cows can also eat plant materials that are mainly grown on farms, but the heat dome depleted much of this supply and the fields were covered with frozen water, so many farmers winter, such as corn. I lost the crop.

“Even with irrigation, it was really difficult to keep up with getting enough water for the plants in the summer,” Plum said. And, “It was a really rainy winter.”

jlee-young@postmedia.com


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British Columbia farmers face the double pain that leads to higher costs of feeding animals.

Source link British Columbia farmers face the double pain that leads to higher costs of feeding animals.

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