OTTAWA – Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz says Ottawa is granting tax deferrals to western livestock producers in regions hit by drought.
The measure applies to producers in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba who are facing feed shortages.
They will be allowed to defer a portion of their 2015 sale proceeds of breeding livestock for one year so that they can replenish that stock.
Proceeds from deferred sales will then be included as part of a producer’s income in the next tax year.
A breeding herd must have been reduced by at least 15 per cent to be eligible for a tax deferral.
A spring and summer with insufficient rain has withered crops in many regions of Western Canada, including hay used by livestock producers to feed their animals.
Ritz said in a release Thursday that eligible cattle producers can request the tax deferral when filing their 2015 income tax returns.
The release says that between April 1 and July 21, 60 per cent of agricultural land on the Prairies has received very low or record Low precipitation. The area represents 27,000 farms and more than 5.8 million cattle.