Farm Credit Canada (FCC) says in a press release issued earlier today that it is offering support to customers in Prince Edward Island (PEI) who could be facing production or cash flow challenges as a result of the temporary ban on PEI potato exports to the United States.
All shipments of potatoes from PEI to the U.S. have been suspended after the discovery of a fungus, called potato wart, on two PEI potato farms.
“On the heels of one of the best crops in years, the PEI potato community is concerned they no longer have access to the valuable market due to the temporary ban on potato exports to the U.S,” said Gil Miner, assistant vice-president for FCC’s Atlantic operations. “If the ban persists, many operations could face cash flow challenges, as well as pose potential storage and transportation challenges for this perishable commodity, so we want our customers to know we’re ready to support them and find solutions.”
FCC says in it release that the North American potato market is highly integrated as Canada and the U.S. are major trade partners for potatoes and potato products.
“Customer support is a central part of FCC’s business,” FCC says in its release. “The Crown corporation will consider additional short-term credit options, deferral of principal payments and/or other loan payment schedule amendments to reduce the financial pressures on producers impacted by the U.S. exports ban.”
FCC will also offer flexibility, based on the individual needs of its customers, to help them through any potential short-term cash flow issues. Each farm financial situation is unique, so there may be a combination of options considered.
“We are following the situation very closely and talking to customers daily. We are ready to help them through these circumstances that are beyond their control,” Miner said. “Our customers’ biggest concern is making sure they are able to make spring payments, both on term loans and crop input loans.”
FCC customers in PEI whose operations have been impacted are encouraged to contact their FCC relationship manager, their local office or the FCC Customer Service Centre at 1-888-332-3301 to discuss their individual situation and options.
FCC is Canada’s leading agriculture and food lender, with a healthy loan portfolio of more than $41 billion. Our employees are dedicated to the future of Canadian agriculture and food. We provide flexible, competitively priced financing, management software, information and knowledge specifically designed for the agriculture and food industry. As a self-sustaining Crown corporation, we provide an appropriate return to our shareholder, and reinvest our profits back into the industry and communities we serve. For more information, visit fcc.ca.