Farmers disappointed Ottawa not offering help for flooded fields

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz says Ottawa is not offering Prairie farmers any special help to recover from this year's flood.

Estimated 1.6 million hectares of farmland in Manitoba and Saskatchewan damaged by flood

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz was in Winnipeg Wednesday and said flood-affected farmers will only be eligible for help through existing programs. (The Canadian Press/Fred Chartrand)

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz says Ottawa is not offering Prairie farmers any special help to recover from this year's flood.

Ritz told a news conference in Winnipeg that affected farmers will be eligible to apply for help under existing insurance programs.

He says those programs worked well for those affected by the 2011 flood and they will serve farmers well now.

It's estimated at least 1.6 million hectares of farmland in Manitoba and Saskatchewan have been damaged by flooding.

Doug Chorney, head of Keystone Agricultural Producers, says farmers were hoping to hear more from the federal government.

He says farmers in Manitoba have been battered by flooding and many will be forced to leave the industry if they don't get extra help.