REGINA – BUSINESSS – Farm Credit Canada (FCC) customers facing financial setbacks due to circumstances beyond their control can depend on Canada’s leading agriculture lender to help them get back on track, FCC announced today.
“2019 has not been an easy year for Canadian farmers. Weather, along with multiple other challenges, is having a serious impact on farm operations across the country,” said Michael Hoffort, FCC president and CEO. “We want everyone in Canada’s agriculture industry to know that we understand the significant challenges being faced, and we will work with our customers to find solutions to any short-term financial pressure that might be weighing them down.”
In many parts of the Prairies, snow has blanketed the fields, making it almost impossible to pick up crops that have been swathed or left standing. This followed weeks of persistent rain with short sunny breaks that caused many crops to sprout, significantly reducing the quality and the producer’s return on investment.
“The last days of harvest normally represent a grain farmer’s profits for the year, so for many, what’s left of their paycheque for the year is still sitting in the field,” Hoffort said.
Producers in other parts of Canada have also faced a challenging growing season, coupled with market access challenges and commodity price fluctuations. Excessive moisture delayed planting season in many parts of Quebec and Ontario, while several operations in Atlantic Canada were impacted by damaging winds and heavy rainfall from Hurricane Dorian this fall.
“The challenges facing producers across Canada can vary significantly,” Hoffort said. “Many, such as Manitoba potato growers, are in back to back years of leaving a significant percentage of their crop unharvested. Even producers with strong balance sheets will feel the impact.”
“Our customers work hard throughout the year to produce high-quality food for consumers at home and abroad, so they deserve our support when facing circumstances beyond their control,” he said.
FCC will work with customers to come up with solutions for their operations on a case-by-case basis and will consider deferral of principal payments and/or other loan payment schedule amendments to reduce the financial pressure these pronounced circumstances may create.
Customers facing financial pressure are encouraged to contact their FCC relationship manager or the FCC Customer Service Centre at 1-888-332-3301 to discuss their individual situation and options.
In addition to working with customers to support any financial concerns, FCC also reminds those who may be struggling to seek support for their mental well-being.
“Customers facing pressures can sometimes feel isolated and don’t always know who to turn to for help,” said Hoffort. “We encourage anyone who is struggling to talk to somebody for support, whether it’s Crisis Services Canada or our partner, the Do More Agriculture Foundation, which has a list of resources on their website.”
FCC is Canada’s leading agriculture lender, with a healthy loan portfolio of more than $36 billion. Our employees are dedicated to the future of Canadian agriculture and its role in feeding an ever-growing world. We provide flexible, competitively priced financing, management software, information and knowledge specifically designed for the agriculture and agri-food industry. As a self-sustaining Crown corporation, our profits are reinvested back into the agriculture and food industry we serve and the communities where our customers and employees live and work while providing an appropriate return to our shareholders. Visit fcc.ca or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and on Twitter @FCCagriculture.