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Continued support for fruit growers after polar vortex

By Caitlin Snow Apr 5, 2024 | 1:21 PM

More support for vineyards who are still feeling the effects from extreme cold.

A polar vortex hit the region February 4, 2023, dropping temperatures to minus 25 in the Annapolis Valley.

In March of last year, the province launched $15 million in funding through the Polar Vortex Industry Recovery Program, to help fruit growers from the damage done.

It was rolled out in two phases.

The first round of funding helped with the cost of increased maintenance for the recovery of grapes, stone fruit, cranberries and other crops sensitive to the cold.

Now Phase 2 is available to farmers and includes money for virus testing, plant materials and ongoing maintenance.

Agriculture Minister Greg Morrow says they knew it would take a number of seasons to know how much damage there is.

“During Phase 1 of the program, we were able to help over a hundred farmers. Now we’re launching Phase 2 to keep that support going as the spring season starts.”

The province says the long-term impact of the event and the sector’s recovery needs continue to be assessed.

Phase 1 of the program helped out 111 farmers.