Farmers in southern and parts of central Alberta have been hit with a double whammy of both hot and dry conditions this summer, according to new data from Statistics Canada that reveals just how hard the weather has been on crop production.
“In Alberta, provincial reports indicated that less than half (43.1 per cent) of the total crop was rated as being in good to excellent condition at the end of July, well below the five-year average of 60.2 per cent,” the agency reported Tuesday.
Wheat has been especially hard hit.
Even though the total harvested area is expected to increase slightly from last year, Statistics Canada says wheat yields are anticipated to be 18.7 per cent lower, at just 45.2 bushels per acre.
Total wheat production in the province is projected at 9.5 million tonnes, down 16.2 per cent from 2022.
Dry conditions were seen across the Prairies this summer, with many areas receiving 90 to 120 millimetres less rain than average.
Southern and parts of central Alberta also saw above-average temperatures.
The conditions have led to an earlier-than-normal harvest for many farmers in the province.
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