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Ninety-five per cent of anything is a considerable amount but, to farmers around the province, 95 per cent of crop reported combined at the end of October isn’t something to brag about. “We normally would have gotten to 95 per cent in the middle of September,” said Ken McDougall, a farmer near Moose Jaw.


McDougall explained that, with wet conditions throughout harvest, “we weren’t even at 50 per cent in September.”


The Government of Saskatchewan released its crop report for Oct. 14 to 20, which stated the numbers this year are consistent the five-year (2009-2013) average. However, in 2009, only 77 per cent was completed by this time and 2010 showed similar numbers to the delayed development of this year.


Shannon Friesen, regional crop specialist at Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, said compared to last year’s quick

harvest, the numbers this year are dragging.


“Everything was slow and delayed right from the get-go . . . most of September was crappy for us,” she said.

With approximately five million acres of farming land in Saskatchewan, there is still work to be done.


“So even at five per cent, we still have lots of acres left,” explained Friesen.


Chickpeas and flax are reported only 83 per cent combined and soybeans at 62 per cent. Although these crops have a much longer season than crops such as mustard, barely or canola, McDougall said this could be a concern.


“If it rains or snows that means they might not harvest for another week. This time of year there is a very real possibility that those numbers won’t change because harvest won’t get done,” she said.


And with snow in the upcoming forecast, Friesen agreed that there could be more setbacks for farmers.


The report presents this year’s yields being average quality, with some even reporting above-average. For farmers like McDougall in the southern part of the province, it’s a different story.


“In the Moose Jaw and Regina area the yields are down, the quality is down, and it will be a very bad year,” he said.


According to the report, moisture still remains high in soil around the province, which could lead to further delays next spring. Both Friesen and McDougall aren’t looking forward to what wet fields going into the winter could mean for the approximately 60,000 farmers in the province.

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