A 70-acre field of Canadian Prairie Spring Wheat was seeded northwest of Bentley on the weekend to help feed the world’s hungry.
Money raised from the crop will go to the Central Alberta Foodgrains Project to assist Canadian Foodgrains Bank, a Christian-based organization based out of Winnipeg that provides international food assistance.
“For wheat, it’s a little bit later than what we would want. We just hope we don’t get that early August frost,” said Doug Maas, a local project committee member.
He said the land became available May 6 and the farmer who donated his land for the seeding was new to the project. Last year, the crop was on 100 acres, and in 2017, the project had 160 acres.
“This year is a smaller field, but we’re just so happy we can continue the project. It was incredibly difficult finding farm land this year, as it has the last three years.”
He said in Lacombe County, a lot of farmers want to expand, so they’re looking to buy or rent land. With the high price of property, if they borrow to buy land, they need that field to produce a crop to help with higher mortgage payments.
It’s the 24th year central Alberta farmers have volunteered their land, time, machinery and fuel to plant and harvest a crop.
“Between weather, pricing, politics, there always seem to be challenges for farmers, but they rise to the occasion. I find them to be very resilient group.”
Maas said cash donations from others in the area help with crop costs like fertilizer. This year, because of the delay in finding a field, donations would really be appreciated, he said.
After the crop is sold at a local grain elevator, the Foodgrains Bank uses the money where the need is greatest, and each dollar raised is matched four to one by the federal government.
To donate to the Central Alberta Foodgrains Project, call Maas at 403-782-1860.