Category: Regulatory

Health Canada proposes ban of remaining two main neonics

Health Canada has proposed banning two of the most commonly used neonicotinoid insecticides (neonics) used in Canadian agriculture in the next three to five years following a review of their impact on aquatic insect species. The proposal published on Wednesday would end outdoor agricultural and turf uses for clothianidin, and all outdoor agricultural and ornamental uses… Read more »

Prairie pest finds unlikely ally in the federal government

There is often a good natured debate about what they are called. Officially, they are the Richardson Ground Squirrel. In polite company they are most often called gophers. In farm country, what they are called is mostly unprintable, especially the adjectives. That being said, the much-maligned pest may have just found an ally in the… Read more »

EU’s top court rules new biotech techniques are GMO

A ruling by the European Union’s (EU) top court states that food produced by a series of new biotechnology breeding techniques, such as CRISPR, should be considered genetically modified organisms (GMO). This ruling means the specific food or food ingredient resulting from these gene-editing techniques falls under the EU’s strict regulations and restrictions on GMO. Any… Read more »

Ag ministers talk trade, business risk management, & whether marijuana qualifies for ag programs

Agriculture ministers from across the country were hosted by B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham in Vancouver on Thursday and Friday. The topics discussed at the annual ministerial get-together included trade, business risk management, labour, and the legalization of cannabis. Here’s a summary of what was discussed at the meeting: Trade The ministers received an update… Read more »

When the CFIA comes to call

There are likely few sentences that strike fear in the hearts of livestock producers quite like, “The CFIA called. They’re coming for a meeting.” That’s exactly what happened here last week, and, admittedly, my first inclination was to freak out. Fearing the worst (an audit on two days notice is the stuff of nightmares), I… Read more »

Mancozeb latest pesticide to face significant restrictions following re-evaluation

The Pest Management Regulatory Agency recently announced results of its re-evaluation of Mancozeb, a broad-spectrum fungicide for agriculture and horticulture crops. Perhaps curiously, the PMRA final decision allows for the continued use of Mancozeb for foliar use on potato crops, the largest acreage use of the fungicide currently. All other uses of Mancozeb are being cancelled… Read more »

SaskWheat meeting to feature information on discovery of GM wheat

Each June, SaskWheat holds its semi-annual meeting at Canada’s Farm Progress Show at Regina. It’s a chance for the board to meet with the farmers they represent and for all attendees to hear from interesting speakers on timely topics. Dallas Carpenter, communications manager for SaskWheat, says they had an interesting and informative meeting planned for this… Read more »

New food safety regulations finalized for cross-border sales

What’s new The Safe Food for Canadians Act was drafted in 2012 and on Wednesday, after years of industry consultation and review, the regulations were finalized. The federal government has consolidated 14 different food regulations into one under published earlier this week in Canada Gazette, Part II. The new rules include licensing and traceability requirements for… Read more »

Get ready to access antibiotics: Establishing a vet-client-patient relationship

Beginning later this year, livestock owners across Canada will have to jump through one extra hoop before accessing certain antibiotic veterinary products. The move is part of a broader strategy to manage antibiotic resistance in human health, and it’s not without controversy. Starting in December, farmers will need an existing vet-client patient relationship (VCPR) to… Read more »

PMRA wraps up pollinator risk assessment on imidacloprid; final public consultation begins

In a somewhat confusing twist in the on-going neonicotinoid saga, Health Canada announced yesterday the findings of its pollinator health risk assessment for imidacloprid, one of three neonicotinoid insecticides currently under re-evaluation in Canada. It’s confusing because the findings and subsequent recommendations of the Pest Management Regulatory’s risk assessment are essentially a moot point: an earlier… Read more »

Canadians want GMOs labeled, study suggests

While consumer opinion is split on the health and safety of food and food ingredients derived from genetic modification (GMOs), the majority of Canadians support labeling foods that contain GMOs, according to a recent survey by Dalhousie University. Researchers at the university, led by Sylvain Charlebois, surveyed 1,046 Canadians in an effort to measure “attitudes… Read more »

Ontario tweaks rabies vaccination rules for livestock

At issue Ontario is set to introduce new rules and regulations as of July 1, 2018, regarding requirements for livestock rabies vaccination. All animals that will interact with the public will be required to maintain up-to-date vaccinations. Why is this a concern? Rabies isn’t fun, you guys. But also, the changes to rabies immunization requirements for… Read more »

Move away from neonics not reflected in MOECC corn planting statistics

Following significant restrictions by the Ontario government in 2015, seed corn companies in the province began to offer non-neonicotinoid seed treatment insecticide options. Now, a significant portion of corn seed sales carry non-neonicotinoid options. It’s bizarre then, that the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change recently published data showing only a 22% reduction in the amount… Read more »

An old profession, but farmers are professionals — A Finnish farmer’s take on maintaining access to crop protection tools

Regulations, by their nature, are country or region specific, but they can have spillover effects into other markets. This is the case with many crop protection products between trading partners — a ban or restriction in one region can have trickle-down impacts on use and even access in another. Many North American farmers have been… Read more »

Water is the ultimate public good. So why doesn’t the public pay for its protection?

I wrote a column last week that caused quite a stir, as was the intention. My tongue-in-cheek title did what it was intended to do: it sparked conversation and some lively debate, but it also got some tempers flaring over the increased regulatory burden farmers not just endure, but must also pay for. Read Top… Read more »