COVID-19 resources for producers

The Western Producer has compiled the following resources so readers can get the most up-to-date-information available on the COVID-19 pandemic.

WP coverage of #COVID19 can be found below. This page will be updated daily.

Saskatchewan

  • Government of Saskatchewan online Self-Assessment Tool – use the self-assessment tool as a first step to determine if you may require COVID-19 testing.
  • Provincial COVID-19 update page – Saskatchewan

Alberta

 

Manitoba

Do you want to read ANYTHING other than #COVID-19 stories? Check out our #NoCOZone:

COVID-19 Facts and information

  • Do More Ag has a comprehensive list of mental health resources available to producers across Canada:

  • Get the latest updates from the Government of Canada:

  • COVID-19 Questions and Answers for Producers – from Agriculture Canada:

  • COVID-19 information from Farm Credit Canada:

  • Get the latest data from the World Health Organization via their COVID-19 Dashboard:

WP COVID-19 coverage:

Most-recent stories are at the top of the list below. Last update – Thursday April 9, 2020 – 1510 CST

B.C. closes provincial parks – All provincial parks in British Columbia closed April 8 and are scheduled to remain so as the province attempts to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Alberta releases COVID-19 projections – The Alberta government projects cases of COVID-19 will range from 800,000 to one million in the province, with deaths ranging from 400 to 6,600.

U.S. pork plant closure adds to concerns over food supply vulnerability – Another major meat-processing plant in the United States is temporarily ceasing production, citing concerns over the spread of COVID-19.

Wind farm construction project raises COVID-19 concerns – The proponents of a large wind energy project near Assiniboia, Sask., have moved to calm fears about an influx of temporary and out-of-province workers amid COVID-19.

Rural hospitals see changes as COVID-19 plans continue – Some hospitals in rural Saskatchewan are already making changes as the province prepares for more COVID-19 infections.

Sask. releases COVID-19 projections – Continued compliance with physical distancing and self-isolation measures are key to saving lives and protecting health care workers, says the Saskatchewan Health Authority.

Canada, U.S. farms face crop losses due to foreign worker delays – WINNIPEG, Manitoba/CHICAGO (Reuters) – Mandatory coronavirus quarantines of seasonal foreign workers in Canada could hurt that country’s fruit and vegetable output this year, and travel problems related to the pandemic could also leave U.S. farmers with fewer workers than usual.

Two Iowa meat plants close as COVID-19 outbreak spreads – CHICAGO (Reuters) – Tyson Foods Inc said on Monday it shut an Iowa hog slaughterhouse after more than 24 cases of COVID-19 involving employees at the facility, in the latest disruption to the U.S. food supply chain from the COVID-19 virus outbreak.

Online auction shatters record – In the midst of a global pandemic, electronic bidding and online attendance shattered past records for a Ritchie Brothers equipment auction held in Regina March 24-25.

Rural life adjusts amid pandemic – Ron Krahn’s father, Abe, wanted to go for coffee with his neighbour, but he realized meeting in person wasn’t a good idea given the COVID-19 pandemic.

Safety groups develop COVID-19 plans – Farm safety organizations have developed emergency planning resources to help farmers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Pandemic fears throw wrench into ag research – COVID-19 is delaying much of society’s normal activities, but for agriculture research, “delay” might actually mean “not going to happen” this year.

Essential service designation called necessary – Provincial governments across Canada have declared professions within the food supply chain as essential services during the COVID-19 pandemic, a move that experts say will help critical goods get to people.

Shippers reassure nervous buyers – Canada’s grain customers are getting antsy about food security, say industry officials.

Amid COVID-19, grain shipments improve – Bulk grain shipments increased last week as railways continued to deliver goods during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Community transfer prevalent in Alta. COVID-19 cases – Another day brought one more death in Alberta from COVID-19. Another resident of the McKenzie Towne Care Centre in Calgary died early today from the virus, bringing the provincial total to nine deaths from the deadly outbreak.

U.S. farmers plan huge corn crop despite price drop, ethanol collapse – CHICAGO, (Reuters) – U.S. farmers plan to plant their biggest corn acreage in eight years this spring, saying the grain is the best option in a tough farm economy despite weak demand from the biofuel industry as the COVID-19 virus spreads.

Sask. extends crop insurance deadline – Saskatchewan farmers will have an extra two weeks to finalize their crop insurance plans this spring.

Rural health facilities part of COVID-19 plans – Rural health facilities are part of provincial pandemic plans, if COVID-19 cases overwhelm larger centres.

Alta. takes further steps to contain COVID-19 spread – An additional 56 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Alberta since yesterday, bringing the total to 542.

UPDATED: Possible COVID-19 exposure cited for partial packing plant closure – OTTAWA/WINNIPEG, Manitoba, March 27 (Reuters) – Harmony Beef, an Alberta packing plant, halted cattle slaughter on Friday after the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) kept some inspectors from work, due to a positive test for COVID-19 by a Harmony worker, the company said.

North America farm suppliers race COVID-19 spread for planting season – WINNIPEG, Manitoba/CHICAGO (Reuters) – North America’s biggest farm suppliers are accelerating shipments of fertilizer, seeds and agricultural chemicals to crop-growing regions in an unprecedented race against the COVID-19 virus that threatens to disrupt planting season.

B.C. cattle group cancels annual meeting – The British Columbia Cattlemen’s Association has cancelled the 2020 annual meeting slated for May 28-30 because of concerns and restrictions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Man. sets up COVID-19 border checkpoints – Manitoba has implemented five checkpoints at border crossings to keep people informed about COVID-19.

Nine more COVID-19 cases in Sask. – There are nine more cases of COVID-19 in Saskatchewan as of March 27 for a total of 104.

Suddenly agriculture is important – A trend has developed in the business news channels over the past week that has not been hard to miss.

Food chain part of B.C. COVID-19 measures – The British Columbia minister of public safety and solicitor general has issued a series of ministerial orders under the Emergency Program Act in response to COVID-19.

Alta. reports 67 more COVID-19 cases – Another 67 cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Alberta within the past 24 hours. Twenty-eight have been hospitalized and 11 are in intensive care. Two people have died in the province from the virus.

Sask. issues COVID warning for club supper – Yesterday the Saskatchewan Health Authority advised anyone who attended the Lakeland Snowmobile Club Wilderness Rally Supper in Christopher Lake on March 14 to self isolate. Two of the more than 110 people who attended the supper have tested positive.

Feds urged to declare food supply chain essential service – Urgency is growing for the federal government to declare the food supply chain as an essential service during the COVID-19 pandemic, given some have warned the crisis could cause price increases and potential shortages.

Pandemic fears hit home on Sask. farm – Brock Weston is unexpectedly home helping with calving after COVID-19 ended his university semester and then laid him low.

Alta. Introduces fines for COVID violations – Alberta confirmed 61 new cases of COVID-19 in the province within the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 419. The continuing rise in cases has led the government to impose fines on violators of certain health protection requirements.

Alta. pledges $50 million for COVID-19 isolation assistance – Albertans who are self-isolating or who are sole caregivers for someone in isolation can apply for financial support from the province.

Man. sees COVID-19 jump; Sask. shrinks gathering size – Saskatchewan has placed additional restrictions on the size of gatherings allowed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

U.S. COVID-19 stimulus bill adds billions in support for farmers – The U.S. COVID-19 stimulus bill that U.S. senators will vote on would add $14 billion to the Agriculture Department’s Commodity Credit Corp spending authority, and authorize another $9.5 billion for U.S. farmers hurt by the fast-spreading pandemic, according to a copy of the bill’s text.

COVID-19 claims second life in Alberta; 57 new cases – A second Albertan has died from COVID-19. A woman in her 80s who was a resident of the McKenzie Towne Continuing Care Centre in Calgary died yesterday of the illness.

UPDATED: Prairie COVID cases rise – some Sask. cases now community transmitted – Four of the six new COVID-19 cases reported in Saskatchewan today are not related to travel, according to officials.

COVID-19 on the rise – Alta. has 301 cases, Sask. 66 – Cases of COVID-19 continue to rise throughout Canada and around the world even as governments closed borders and restricted movement.

North American millers, bakers scramble to satisfy bread-buying binge – North American flour mills and bakeries are rushing to boost production as the spread of the new coronavirus leads to stockpiling of staples like bread and pasta.

$5 billion in loans for farmers, ag businesses facing COVID-19 hardship – Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today announced important new measures to support farmers and agri-food businesses in Canada facing financial hardship due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Manitoba advises cancellation of travel plans – Manitoba is reporting 20 positive cases of COVID-19 as of March 23.

Case argued that farmers markets be declared essential – Worries about food supply chains in the face of COVID-19 virus effects and restrictions have prompted the National Farmers Union to demand that farmers markets be declared as essential services.

Alberta taps celebrities to send clear message on COVID-19 – Alberta has 259 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of March 22, the provincial health department reported. Thirty-three cases were confirmed Sunday.

Canada’s stretched hospitals brace for impact – Canada’s health system is preparing for an influx of coronavirus patients in the midst of a long-running bed shortage, calling doctors out of retirement and ramping down any treatment that can wait.

Sask. announces financial support for businesses – Saskatchewan has announced a financial support plan for businesses and employees affected by COVID-19, along with more restrictions.

COVID-19 impacts on the meat trade – The Canadian beef sector has formed a cross industry team to ensure stable beef production and trade can continue under the restrictions of COVID-19.

Farm preparation in the face of COVID-19 – Farm preparation in the face of COVID-19 means making plans that are subject to change to protect people, livestock and farm assets.

Tips for hosting, attending bull sales during COVID-19 – Bull sales are scheduled across the Prairies in coming weeks and months amid the threat of COVID-19 spread.

Bull recovery expected from COVID-19 – Canadian exporters reeling from the impact of COVID-19 need to know this is likely a short-term setback, says Export Development Canada.

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