Since receiving a cattle-feed cart, Barry Cloutier finds it easier to keep up with over 200 head of livestock following a baler injury.
Barry Cloutier is farming easier, safer and with less pain these days thanks to a grant from Back to Ag, a program that helps producers and agricultural workers purchase assistive technology following a traumatic injury.
The farmer from near Ponteix, Saskatchewan lost portions of his index and middle fingers on his right hand following a baler injury in 2014. With only two fingers left on his dominant hand, farming tasks are more difficult for the producer, who has to keep up with the demands of over 200 head of livestock. Like hauling five-gallon pails of feed six months out of the year. “I needed something that would help ease the pressure and pain on my hand,” he says.
That’s when he saw an article about Back to Ag.
“I was waiting for my wife and happened across a newspaper article about Back to Ag,” he explains. “I thought, wow, that’s interesting!” Cloutier started thinking about applying and what type of technical solution would best accommodate his injury. Cloutier had looked into other programs and personal insurance, but no program or insurance existed that would be able to help him deal with his injury on the farm.
Through the Back to Ag Program, Cloutier was able to purchase a cattle-feed cart. The grain handling system means that Cloutier is able to feed his livestock more efficiently and safely, without the risk of injuring his hand further.
When talking about the grain handling system, he is enthusiastic. “I like the way it looks; it’s a great idea. I like the idea of not having to haul those doggone pails.” He does have one problem with the new grain handling system, “It might make me want to farm that much longer,” he laughs.
Cloutier encourages other traumatically-injured farmers to find out more about the Back to Ag Program. “Definitely apply,” he says. “Find out more and use it for something that’s going to help you and be useful on your farm.”