Prince Edward Island government:

‘$4.7 mln in funding will keep 40,000 tons of potatoes out of landfill’

The government of Prince Edward Island has stated says its $4.7 million in funding for the potato industry will result in 40,000 tons of of Island potatoes being processed, rather than potentially going into landfill.  But one of the principal players in the three-way arrangement, processor Cavendish Farms, says it is still reviewing government announcements at this time.

Agriculture Minister Bloyce Thompson announced the funding April 23, saying the money would pay for shipping and storage of potatoes from the 2019 growing season "to help mitigate the potato surplus because of the market conditions related to COVID-19."

A spokesperson for the Department of Agriculture and Land told CBC News via email that as part of the arrangement, processor Cavendish Farms had agreed to process the 40 million kilograms of potatoes that didn't have a market.

The funding, administered through the P.E.I. Potato Board, is to be used to pay for the additional costs to ship and store the processed potatoes using off-Island storage facilities.

Details to be worked out reports that the P.E.I. Potato Board said there are details of the arrangement yet to be finalized, but the way the agreement is set up, Cavendish Farms would be compensated for "incremental" trucking and storage costs, meaning over and above what the company would normally incur as part of its regular operations.

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