Program supports limestone access for farmers

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SHUBENACADIE: A program to help farmers cover the cost of transporting limestone for use in reducing soil acidity is now accepting applications for 2018-19.

The Limestone Trucking Assistance Program will provide up to $20,000 to eligible farms and is accepting applications until April 1 for trucking activity between Jan. 1 and Apr. 1.

“Access to limestone to help reduce the acidity of soil is critical for the viability and prosperity of farms across the province,” said Agriculture Minister Keith Colwell. “By reducing their transportation costs this funding helps to ensure farmers have equitable access to limestone no matter where they are in Nova Scotia.”

Applicants must be a registered farm, have completed a soil analysis report and have a nutrient management plan that indicates the need for limestone. Reimbursement will be 80 per cent of either the cost of trucking or the Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal gravel rate, whichever is less.

“We appreciate the province’s continued support for this program,” said Victor Oulton, president of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture. “With favourable changes, including an earlier purchase period and a second application intake period, farmers will be able to increase profitability.”

A second application period will be opened in the fall.