PEI Growers Receive C$12.6 Million

Published online: Mar 14, 2001
Prince Edward Island, Can., potato growers will be paid C$12.6 million by the Canadian government to divert tons of potatoes.

The potatoes, unsold after a United States border closure because of the devastating potato wart fungus found in PEI, will be sold locally, given to charity, and used as fertilizer on fields.

With the initial grant was one for C$1.7 million for food banks. Growers have already received C$13 million for diversion and C$3 million from the emergency federal fund.

This brings the total to C$30 million.

Despite this, growers are disappointed in the amount, which will not make up for their losses. Their potatoes are now selling for three cents a pound-less than half the cost of production.

In addition, officials from the Human Resources Department are looking into aid for workers in the Island's 230 packing plants. Hundreds of workers are involved.

Some growers say they won't be planting this spring but others say they will not reduce production.