The County of St. Paul has declared a Municipal State of Agricultural Disaster on November 26, 2019. This declaration covers the entire County of St. Paul and is based primarily on annual crop unharvested acres.
The County of St. Paul has 35% of annual crops that remain unharvested as of November 26, 2019. These unharvested acres are consistent throughout the County of St. Paul. With recent snowfall it is unlikely that any more will be harvested before spring.
The County Council is aware of the hardships facing County producers because of weather conditions, and is raising awareness of the problems facing agriculture in the County of St. Paul. When our agriculture industry suffers all of our communities suffer.
The agriculture community has seen several tough years in terms of unseasonably cool, wet weather in summer followed by excess moisture in fall and spring. These conditions both delay maturity of annual crops and make harvest difficult if not impossible for many of our producers. The added cost of drying grain with the increased cost of running equipment in wet and cold conditions was also considered when making this decision.
In 2017 the County of St. Paul also declared a State of Agricultural disaster in the spring after a similar harvest season in 2016. In 2016 the unharvested acres were at approximately 25% with poor yields and quality also being a problem.
With many crops remaining in the fields, residents and visitors to the County of St. Paul are asked to be mindful about hunting and winter recreation activities. Crops can be severely damaged by vehicle and snowmobile traffic; residents are reminded to obtain permission before travelling on what may appear to be open fields.