Lingering drought pushes Saskatchewan to freeze Crown land lease rates

(USDA NRCS South Dakota/ BY-SA 2.0)

The Government of Saskatchewan has announced that rates paid by producers leasing Crown grazing land remain the same for 2023 and will not be increased.

As well, growers leasing Crown land for grazing who have had to reduce stocking rates due to dry conditions are eligible to have rent reduced by up to 50 per cent.

Saskatchewan’s Crown grazing rates are established annually using a formula based on fall cattle prices and stocking rate of each parcel of land. In total, there are about six million acres of Crown land under grazing leases in the province.

Provincial agriculture minister David Marit says, “Saskatchewan’s livestock sector is facing increasing costs of production in addition to successive years of low precipitation in many areas of the province.”

Marit says keeping grazing rates at 2022 levels and implementing reductions for Crown grazing lands assists producers through drought challenges while still upholding stewardship and productivity of land.

This rate freeze will apply to all grazing leases across Saskatchewan.

Rent reduction will apply when a lessee must reduce number of animals grazing Crown leases by 20 per cent or more when compared to the long-term capacity of the land parcel. Rate reduction will match the capacity reduction ranging from 20 to 50 per cent.

Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association chair Arnold Balicki says, “We are pleased with today’s announcement, as it is something many of our ranchers have been calling for.”

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