OTTAWA — Canadian farmers could reap as much as an extra $95-million from AgriStability following the recent removal of the reference margin limit — a key change to the business risk management program jointly announced by the country’s agriculture ministers in March.
Removal of the limit is retroactive to the 2020 program year. Deadline for enrollment in AgriStability for 2021 has been extended to June 30th as well.
The key change is touted as an “important step towards making the program easier to understand, more bankable, more accessible, and more fair for some sectors, who might have been left out of the program under the previous rules,” according to a Canadian government statement.
Costs for the removal of the reference margin limit will be shared, as outlined in the Canadian Agricultural Partnership — 60% by the federal government and 40% by provincial and territorial governments.
Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau said she remained open to further discussions on improving AgriStability and that her offer for cost-shared improvements to the compensation rate “remains on the table.”
Ontario Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Minister Ernie Hardeman said “it will provide help to farmers facing challenging times right now.”
He added that it was important that the discussions with the federal government continue to improve the program.