Manitoba will assume control of five community pastures next fall as part of the federal government’s plan to get out the community pasture business.
As of November 2013, Agriculture Canada will no longer administer the community pastures of Westbourne, Lakeview, Gardenton, Pansy and Sylvan Dale.
“This transfer is a great opportunity for those with a more direct stake in the usage of the land to take over the pasture management,” agriculture minister Gerry Ritz said in a statement.
Earlier this year, the federal government announced it would divest itself of 85 community pastures on the Prairies. The Manitoba pastures represent the first step in a process that is expected to take until 2018. Agriculture Canada staff will continue to work at the pastures for the 2013 grazing season, which will give the Manitoba government and pasture users the necessary time to develop plans for the 2014 grazing season.
In its announcement, the federal government noted it is negotiating with the government of Saskatchewan on the first round of the pasture transition program. The federal government plans to hand over control of five community pastures in Saskatchewan for the 2014 grazing season.