Wild Rice Crops May Go Unharvested

Thursday, August 28, 2003 at 13:13




A wild rice expert says he wouldn’t be surprised if some Northern Saskatchewan wild rice growers decided to leave their crops in the water.


Some wild rice producers in Manitoba are reportedly choosing not to harvest their crop because of the poor prices this year. Saskatchewan Agriculture spokesman Gerry Ivanochko says that is definitely an option for some Saskatchewan growers, as well.


With buyers offering between 50 and 70 cents a pound for wild rice this year compared to 80 to 90 cents last year, Ivanochko is advising northern growers to carefully consider whether it’s worth racking up harvesting expenses if there’s no guaranteed return.


For those growers that won’t consider leaving their crop unharvested, Ivanochko says they always have the option of getting their rice custom processed and stored until prices improve.


Ivanochko says the low prices are being caused by large inventories of wild rice from last year, coupled with what’s anticipated to be a bumper crop across the country this year.