- Created on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 14:40
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By BRITTANY ERWIN
What was once known as the world’s breadbasket could now be known for something entirely
An upcoming documentary, titled It’s Our Land, explores the developing potash mining industry in Saskatchewan and its effects on farmers, and Canada’s economy.
The team consists of Niagara College students Danielle Morandini, who is the director; working on the camera are Stacey Koudys and Rob Duckworth. Producer is Valerie Ceko.
The third-year Broadcasting – Radio, Television and Film (BRTF) students successfully pitched one of the four projects approved. Three of the four documentary teams are going outside of Ontario, with one staying in the area.
Potash is mined and manufactured salts that contain potassium. The name comes from when plant ashes were soaked in water in a pot, and this was the way of manufacturing the product before the industrial era.
Today, potash is used in fertilizers. It is the largest global industrial use of the element potassium.
Potash is an important mineral in Saskatchewan, let alone the rest of the world and that is why Morandini, the director, wanted to film it.
Her family, who reside in Saskatchewan, live on a farm that is primarily potash underneath the soil. They have been offered $13.5 million, and more by the day, to sell their land.
Saskatchewan residents generally are people who have their roots in the province; they don’t want to move, because farming is what they do.
She says, “The root of Saskatchewan is farming.” This is causing a debate on whether to sell the farm, or stay and call it home.
The team will be on scene from Feb. 19 until the Feb. 26. For the first two days of their trip they will be spending time in a hotel, and gathering footage. Afterwards, they will be doing numerous interviews as well as visiting mines and various farmers to gather opinions on the potash mining industry and its impact.
Recently, Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan cut its workforce by 18 per cent, affecting 1,045 people, in the province and in New Brunswick and Florida.
Potash Corp. pushed its average price for potash to $307 per tonne in the third quarter, down from $429 per tonne in the same period last year. Most of the job cuts from this will directly be hitting close to home, where 440 people will be affected in
The It’s Our Land team has already held many fundraisers, some at the Welland Boston Pizza, and others online trying to reach their $4,000 goal.
The film will be released in mid April.
Donations can be made on their website http://sunmoonmedia.wix.com/itsourland