Manitoba farmers can’t win: Hit hard by flooding after last year’s drought

While Manitobans in communities across the province are scrambling to save their properties from flooding, the excess water is hitting one local industry particularly hard.

Bill Campbell, president of Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP), said Manitoba farmers are struggling, as weather conditions have done a complete 180 from last year’s drought.

“It’s certainly ironic, when we couldn’t get any rain last year, and this spring we can’t seem to get any sunshine and any drying days,” Campbell told 680 CJOB’s Connecting Winnipeg.

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“A lot of farmers would normally be well into their seeding operations by now, but not this year…. That possibility is still there — that we will be limited on the acres that are seeded this year.”

“We need to get these water levels down. We need to be able to get soil temperatures increased and soil conditions so that they can carry our equipment. We need to get the grass growing. We need to get this livestock out of the yard.”

Campbell says he’s concerned about the physical and mental health of farmers.

“We really need to be aware of what’s going on. Everybody in Manitoba’s got concerns, but I’m really concerned with the physical and mental health of our ag industry in dealing with these situations.

“There’s a lot of strain and a lot of concern.”

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Read more: Manitoba officials preparing for 2009 flood levels as more rain forecast

Brunkild-area farmer David Laudin told 680 CJOB he’s still waiting for the ground to dry up before seeding can begin — and time is ticking away.

“We are prepared for our spring seeding season, but we’ve got to get to it first,” Laudin said.

“I’m thinking if we get toward the end of the third week of May, it looks like it’s a possibility.

“But if we get rain next week, that’s going to push it off to the fourth week of May, and we’re going to start looking at deadlines for crop insurance.”

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