With temperatures in the area ranging from +5 degrees Celsius down to -30 within a matter of days, farmers and grain buyers in southeast Saskatchewan have been faced with a few challenges this winter.

"For the most part we've been fairly steady, of course when it's been cold, guys have been shutting down and waiting for the weather to hold up," says Tye Olson with Richardson-Pioneer in Estevan. 

With a lot of grain from 2017's harvest going straight into the combine through a straight cut header rather than swathes, a lot of it never got a ton of time to dry out, which can lead to spoiled or rotten grain if it isn't looked after.

"We have been noticing an increase in the amount of grain coming in that has started to heat or has a little bit of a heat-age issue associated with it."

Olson urged farmers to make sure to keep an eye on the bins in their yards this year to make sure they're turning their grain whenever necessary to cycle that warm grain in with cooler stuff to cool it down.

"We're seeing it coming in on our end, and guys just have to kinda keep an eye out on the bins is what we're seeing."

For the next month or so, farmers in the area are going to be hauling in their grain as steadily as they can to make try and sell as much of their grain as possible before seeding season comes around the corner and road bans take effect.

"Beginning to middle of March is when we start to see them. It's getting close to seeding time, so guys are at that point looking to get into the field or starting to work on stuff. We try and entice a little hauling during ban season but guys are a little reluctant, they can only do so much."

The grain has been moving on the rails fairly steadily this year out of the terminal, which is a bit of a relief after last year's CP strike and the threat of a strike from CN as well.

"We have added storage here but for the most part we've been able to get the cars here on time or even... a little early actually."

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