Farmers struggling to produce quality crops amid drought

It may have rained for a short stretch Saturday, but farmers will need much more than they got to salvage their fast-dying crops.

The owner of Didar Berry Farm in Delta, Anand Aujlay, says his farm is struggling to produce the type of high-quality blueberries it’s known for this year.

"The berries are getting a little bit softer,” he says. “Also it's getting heavy, it's not that juicy, because there’s no natural water."

The extended stretch of extreme heat and dryness has forced Aujlay to send workers home early, but it has also kept customers away, putting him on pace for a rough year business-wise.

"We probably have about 40 per cent less than a normal year,” he says.

A short burst of rain touched down across Metro Vancouver Saturday, but Environment Canada has yet to determine if it was enough to end the current streak of 45 days with no measureable rain.

Whether it was enough or not, SFU earth sciences professor John Clague says it’ll take a lot more than that to make any type of impact.

"I think we’re going to need somewhere between 50 to 100 millimetres,” said Clague. “The ground is so dry that we need a few days of a good soak.”

A multi-day stretch of rain is expected to hit Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley later this week.