Drought status still in place

Flood affected areas around Ashburton. Photo: Pool / Stuff / Chris Skelton
Parts of Canterbury remain officially in drought, despite recent flooding. Photo: Pool / Stuff / Chris Skelton
North Canterbury’s drought status remains in place, for now.

Canterbury Rural Advisory Group chairman Winton Dalley said the drought was far from over, as poor winter crops and low feed reserves would be an issue right through until spring.

"The issues are still there, and now with the wet ground people feeding nuts and grain will have a difficult time feeding them out.

"In the short term it will be difficult, in the long term it [the rain] is a blessing."

After two years of drought and now flooding, the North Canterbury Rural Support Trust is continuing to provide support to the region’s farmers.

Last month, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor extended the drought classification to November 30.

Although this week’s rain might bring some changes, support was still available, trust chairwoman Gayle Litchfield said.

"The feed issues will still be there. The paddocks will green up, but I don’t think anyone is expecting significant growth."

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