CleanFARMS Inc. has earmarked $75,000 to support recycling agricultural supplies for Saskatchewan farmers.
A 2011 pilot program funded by the ministry of Agriculture and operated by the Provincial Council of Agriculture Development and Diversification Boards has seen approximately 83,300 kilograms of plastic recycled over the past two years.
Now, items such as plastic grain bags, plastic twine, silage bags and bale wrap will have a firmer recycling framework that keeps them out of landfills.
"As the agricultural industry grows in Saskatchewan, we see a growing need to expand recycling programs to incorporate agricultural plastics," said Saskatchewan Environment Minister Ken Cheveldayoff in a December 17, 2012 statement to media. "With the support of Saskatchewan producers, I am confident that expanding this program will further protect our environment."
A 2012 CleanFARMS study estimated that 5,500 tonnes of non-organic waste are generated on British Columbia farms each year. About two-thirds of this waste is plastic.
As it currently stands, there are either limited or no recycling options for many agricultural plastic waste products in Saskatchewan.
The Saskatchewan Agricultural Stewardship Council (SASC), made up of representatives from the agricultural industry, and formed under the CleanFARMS umbrella, has been tasked to develop and implement an agricultural plastics recycling program.
"The agricultural industry is pleased to be working with the Government of Saskatchewan and farmers in the province to develop an environmentally-responsible and cost-effective program to recycle agricultural plastics," said SASC Chair Trevor Carlson.
CleanFARMS is a non-profit industry stewardship organization committed to environmental responsibility through the proper management of agricultural waste.