ARCHIVED — Vol. 146, No. 5 — February 29, 2012

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Registration

SOR/2012-13 February 9, 2012

SEEDS ACT
CANADA AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS ACT

Regulations Amending the Seeds Regulations

P.C. 2012-67 February 9, 2012

His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, hereby makes the annexed Regulations Amending the Seeds Regulations pursuant to

  1. (a) subsection 4(1) (see footnote a) of the Seeds Act (see footnote b); and

  2. (b) section 32 (see footnote c) of the Canada Agricultural Products Act (see footnote d).

REGULATIONS AMENDING THE SEEDS REGULATIONS

AMENDMENTS

1. (1) The definition “varietal blend” in subsection 2(2) of the Seeds Regulations (see footnote 1) is replaced by the following:

“varietal blend” means a mixture of two or more varieties of the same kind or species of pedigreed status seed; (mélange de variétés)

(2) Subsection 2(2) of the Regulations is amended by adding the following in alphabetical order:

“PPTM varietal blend” means a varietal blend for plant pest tolerance management that is intended to maintain the efficacy of a plant pest tolerance characteristic; (mélange de variétés GRP)

2. (1) Paragraph 13(1)(c) of the Regulations is replaced by the following:

  1. (c) the grower of the seed has completed and signed a declaration attesting that the seed is derived from a crop that has been issued a crop certificate and that the seed has not been contaminated by any other seed;

(2) Subsection 13(1) of the Regulations is amended by adding “and” at the end of paragraph (d) and by adding the following after that paragraph:

  1. (e) in the case of a varietal blend, the blend is a PPTM varietal blend of kinds or species set out in any of Tables I to II.1 and IV to VII of Schedule I.

3. Section 14 of the Regulations and the heading before it are repealed.

4. Paragraph 23(f) of the Regulations is replaced by the following:

  1. (f) in the case of seed corn that is a mixture of two or more varieties, except for PPTM varietal blends, the name and percentage of each of the component varieties and either the approximate Corn Heat Unit rating or the designation “early”, “medium” or “late”, as appropriate;

5. (1) Paragraphs 33(2)(c) and (d) of the Regulations are replaced by the following:

  1. (c) the variety name of the seed, or in the case of a PPTM varietal blend, the names of the varieties in the blend;
  2. (d) except in the case of a mixture set out in Table III, XIII or XIV of Schedule I, the crop certificate number or, in the case of a blend of two or more original seed lots of certified status, whether of the same variety or a PPTM varietal blend, the two-digit seed year designation followed by the word “BLEND”; and

(2) Subparagraph 33(3)(c)(i) of the French version of the Regulations is replaced by the following:

  1. (i) soit les renseignements exigés par le paragraphe (2), le mode de présentation de ceux-ci, la partie marquée et la couleur de celle-ci étant conformes à l’étiquette canadienne,

6. (1) Paragraph 34(2)(b) of the French version of the Regulations is replaced by the following:

  1. b) la dénomination de catégorie de la semence;

(2) Paragraph 34(2)(c) of the Regulations is replaced by the following:

  1. (c) the variety name of the seed or, in the case of a PPTM varietal blend, the names of the varieties in the blend;

(3) Subparagraph 34(3)(c)(i) of the Regulations is replaced by the following:

  1. (i) the information required by subsection (2) is marked on the package and the layout of the information, the area marked and the colour conform to the inter-agency certification tag, or

7. Section 93 of the Regulations is amended by adding the following after subsection (3):

(4) When seed of pedigreed status is conditioned or graded, the operator shall

  1. (a) complete, within 30 days after the conditioning or grading, a pedigreed seed declaration that contains sufficient information to permit the tracing of all claims made with respect to the seed, including the name of the grower, crop certificate number, quantity of seed and official tag use; and

  2. (b) keep the declaration for a period of one year after the final disposition of the seed and, in the case of foundation status and registered status seed, for a period of two years after the final disposition of the seed.

8. The French version of the Regulations is amended by replacing, with any modifications that the circumstances require, “aliénation” with “disposition” in the following provisions:

  1. (a) subparagraph 68(2)(c)(iv); and

  2. (b) subsection 93(3).

COMING INTO FORCE

9. These Regulations come into force on the day on which they are registered.

REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT

(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)

Executive summary

Issue: For some varieties of crop plants, plant breeders have recommended planting pre-blended seed of two varieties of the same crop kind in order to maintain and prolong the efficacy of specific plant pest tolerance traits. The previous Seeds Regulations (the Regulations) did not clearly define the requirements for the grading and labelling of seed of varietal blends of two varieties of the same species for the major agricultural crop kinds such as wheat, corn and soybeans. Consequently, the Regulations did not contain clear grading and labelling requirements for seed of plant pest tolerance management (PPTM) varietal blends such as those intended for the management of the characteristic that confers tolerance to orange blossom wheat midge (WM) in wheat.

Description: The amendments clarify that Canada pedigreed grade names, such as Canada Certified No. 1, may be applied to PPTM varietal blends and specify grading and labelling requirements to ensure their truthful representation in the marketplace. The amendments are applicable to PPTM varietal blends of crop kinds listed in any of Tables I to II.1 and IV to VII of Schedule I to the Regulations, which include the major crop kinds grown in Canada.

Cost-benefit statement: It is expected that the amendments will, in the long run, enhance uptake of the PPTM varietal blend strategy, thereby prolonging the efficacy of plant pest tolerance characteristics to the benefit of the agriculture sector as a whole. Benefits include reduced economic losses from seed or grain downgrading as a result of the presence of damaged kernels, decreased pesticide usage by producers (cost savings / environmental benefits) and enhanced ability to meet market demand for seed and/or grains of crops using this technology.

Business and consumer impacts: The amendments will facilitate the marketing of PPTM varietal blends and thereby enhance the ability of seed growers and producers to meet market demand, protect the long-term benefits of plant pest tolerance characteristics, reduce seed and grain industry losses caused by pest damage, and reduce the amount of pesticides used on these crops.

Domestic and international coordination and cooperation: The amendments will maintain and improve the ability of Canadian producers to supply high quality seed for propagation and grain for further processing domestically and internationally.

Performance measurement and evaluation plan: The success of this amendment will be measured in the level of compliance of seed of PPTM varietal blends sold in the marketplace with the grading and labelling requirements in the Regulations. Routine monitoring by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) of seed sold in the marketplace will include the monitoring of PPTM varietal blends.


Issue

Plant pest tolerance conferred by a single gene is often short-lived when the crop is grown in pure stands because there is high selection pressure in the pest population to overcome the tolerance characteristic in the plants. For example, researchers estimate that in pure stands of wheat midge (WM) tolerant wheat, the pest population may overcome the pest tolerance characteristic in less than 10 years.

A new strategy has been developed to significantly extend the efficacy of a pest tolerance characteristic in certain varieties of crop plants. The Canadian wheat sector is the first crop sector in the world to implement this strategy. Since wheat production acreage in Canada currently exceeds that of any other single crop kind in Canada, this strategy will significantly benefit the Canadian agriculture industry. The strategy involves the planting of a small percentage of a plant variety susceptible to a specific pest (the refuge) sporadically within a field of a specific plant variety tolerant to the pest (tolerant variety). Random mutations in the pest population can enable the pest to overcome the tolerance characteristic in the plants. However, the presence of the refuge greatly reduces the probability that such mutations will become persistent and widespread in the pest population. To ensure and facilitate the planting of two varieties of seed at once with the optimal proportion of the refuge and tolerant varieties, the seed of the two specific plant varieties will be sold together as a blend. This type of blend, intended to maintain the efficacy of a plant pest tolerance characteristic, is called a plant pest tolerance management (PPTM) varietal blend.

The previous Regulations did not clearly define the requirements for the grading and labelling of Canada pedigreed seed of a blend of more than one variety of a crop kind listed in any of Tables I to II.1 and IV to VII of Schedule I to the Regulations, which include major crop kinds such as wheat, corn and soybean. This lack of clarity could have resulted in the unintentional non-compliance of seed of PPTM varietal blends in the marketplace due to improper grading or labelling. The amendments clarify the requirements for the grading and labelling of pedigreed seed of these blends.

Objectives

The objectives of this amendment are

  • to make it easier for producers to comply with the regulations by clarifying the grading and labelling requirements for seed of PPTM varietal blends;
  • to remove an impediment to the uptake of this strategy, by requiring that PPTM varietal blends seed labels and tags contain truthful information; and
  • to amend requirements for the completion and retention of records by operators of registered seed establishments in response to recommendations made by the Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations (SJCSR).

Description

The amendments will ensure the truthful representation of seed of PPTM varietal blends in the marketplace and clarify that a Canada pedigreed grade name, such as Canada Certified No. 1, may be applied to a PPTM varietal blend.

The definition of “varietal blend” in subsection 2(2) of the Regulations is amended to clarify the existing requirement that a varietal blend must contain only pedigreed seed.

A definition of “PPTM varietal blend” as a varietal blend intended to maintain the efficacy of a plant pest tolerance characteristic is added to the Regulations. This will prevent the naming of a varietal blend as a PPTM varietal blend when the blend serves no function in managing a plant pest tolerance characteristic.

Paragraph 13(1)(c) is amended to change the word “mixed” to the word “contaminated” so that the intentional mixing of seed of the varieties in a PPTM varietal blend is not prohibited by this paragraph.

A new paragraph is added to subsection 13(1) to clearly state that seed of PPTM varietal blends of crop kinds listed in any of Tables I to II.1 and IV to VII of Schedule I to the Regulations may be graded with a Canada pedigreed grade name.

Section 23 is amended to exempt PPTM varietal blends from specific labelling requirements intended only for varietal blends of silage corn seed.

Some minor amendments are made to the French version of the Regulations to improve consistency with the English version.

Paragraphs 33(2)(c) and 34(2)(c) are amended to clarify that the tags for PPTM varietal blends must indicate the names of all the varieties in the blend. The requirement to identify both the pest tolerant and susceptible varieties in the PPTM varietal blend will maintain transparency of the varietal identity for seed growers and purchasers and facilitate the tracing and tracking of pedigreed seed in the marketplace.

Paragraph 33(2)(d) is amended to correct an oversight in the previous regulations by clarifying that crop certificate numbers are not required on the official tags for seed in mixtures specified in Tables III, XIII or XIV of Schedule I. The amendment also establishes that where certified seed of the same variety or of two or more varieties is blended for the purpose of creating a PPTM varietal blend, the crop certificate number is to be replaced by the two-digit seed year followed by the word “BLEND” on the domestic tag.

The amendment to subparagraph 34(3)(c)(i) corrects an error made in the amendments of November 2007 that changed the words “inter-agency certification tag” to “domestic tag.” Section 34 deals with seed produced outside of Canada and relates to the requirements for the inter-agency certification tag and not those of the domestic tag.

Amendments to sections 14 and 93 address the concern of the SJCSR that the Seeds Act does not provide the regulation-making authority to require records to be kept. These amendments are not related to the PPTM varietal blends strategy.

Section 14 (Records) of the previous Regulations is repealed in its entirety. The requirements for the completion and retention of a pedigreed seed declaration described in subsections 14(2) and 14(3) are added as paragraphs 93(4)(a) and 93(4)(b) of Part ⅠV of the Regulations. Part ⅠV is under the regulation-making authority of the Canada Agricultural Products Act, which provides the authority to make regulations requiring the keeping of records.

Paragraph 93(4)(b) stipulates that the pedigreed seed declaration for foundation and registered status seed must be kept for a minimum of two years after the date of the final disposition of the lot, and for all other pedigreed seed lots, a minimum of one year after the date of the final disposition of the lot. This is a change from the requirement in subsection 14(2) of the previous Regulations, which stipulated that records for all seed lots must be kept for a minimum of two years from the time of conditioning, sampling, testing, grading or labelling. These changes will not significantly affect the record-keeping requirements for foundation and registered seed, nor will they have a significant impact on the ability to track and trace other pedigreed status seed lots in the marketplace.

It should be noted that the amendments to clarify the grading and labelling of PPTM varietal blends are only intended to remove a potential impediment to innovation in the area of plant pest tolerance management. Seeds in these mixtures will still be subject to all other regulatory requirements including those related to plant biosafety.

The Canadian Seed Growers’ Association (CSGA) is responsible for applying the additional certification requirements for testing and remediation of seed lots of wheat midge tolerant PPTM varietal blends.

Regulatory and non-regulatory options considered

In the development of these amendments, the following options were considered:

Option one — No change, maintain status quo

The previous regulations did not clearly define the requirements for the grading and labelling of PPTM varietal blends for crop kinds listed in any of Tables I to II.1 and IV to VII of Schedule I. This resulted in confusion within the seed industry regarding the specific requirements for grading and labelling of PPTM varietal blends which would have continued to exist in the absence of amendments to the Regulations.

Option two — Modify the grade tables and the labelling requirements in the Regulations to include new, specific requirements for PPTM varietal blends

New categories or grade names could be created for PPTM varietal blends and the associated standards could be added to the relevant Tables of Schedule I. In the same manner, additional new subsections could be added to the sections of the Regulations dealing with grading and labelling of seed to provide specific requirements for PPTM varietal blends.

This option was judged to be onerous, would have required many successive regulatory amendments, and would have increased the complexity of the Regulations and of the Tables of Schedule I.

Option three — Clarify the requirements for grading and labelling of PPTM varietal blends (recommended)

This option clarifies the existing requirements for the grading and labelling of seed of PPTM varietal blends.

This option was chosen as it eliminates confusion regarding the specific requirements for the grading and labelling of seed of PPTM varietal blends, supports the new strategy for the management of plant pest tolerance characteristics and is strongly preferred by the seed and crop sectors.

Benefits and costs

An analysis of the benefits and costs of the introduction and widespread use of wheat midge tolerant PPTM varietal blends has been prepared as an example of the potential of this innovative tool for the management of plant pest tolerance characteristics. The resulting document, Benefits and Costs Associated with Plant Pest Tolerance Management of Varietal Blends — An Example: Management of the Wheat Midge Tolerance Characteristic in Canadian Wheat, is available on request from the CFIA’s Seed Section.

The benefits and costs incurred are related to the management practices intended to extend the efficacy of specific plant pest tolerance characteristics such as in the case of PPTM varietal blends, and are not a direct effect of the amendments. The amendments serve only to remove an impediment to the uptake of this pest tolerance management strategy by clarifying grading and labelling requirements for PPTM varietal blends of crop kinds listed in any of Tables I to II.1 and IV to VII of Schedule I.

Benefits

Benefits of use of PPTM varietal blends

The introduction and widespread use of PPTM varietal blends will significantly prolong the efficacy of certain plant pest tolerance characteristics and provide long term economic benefits to the agriculture industry. The main economic benefit will be in the reduction of losses in seed and grain crop yield and quality caused by pests and a reduction in the costs associated with the purchase and application of pesticides. These benefits can be considerable in sectors and crop years where pests have a significant impact on crop yield or quality.

In the case of wheat, WM infestations result in yield losses and downgrading of harvested grain to lower value grades. The widespread use of WM tolerant varietal blends in Canada has the potential to increase annual returns for wheat producers due to the prevention of yield losses and the reduction of downgrading of grain damaged by WM attack.

Reduced pesticide application is an environmental benefit that may have wide ranging positive effects, both in Canada and globally, and across many sectors of society and the environment.

Benefits of amendment to grading and labelling requirements

Clarifying the grading and labelling requirements for PPTM varietal blends will facilitate the marketing of PPTM varietal blends thus making the advantages of these blends more widely available.

Costs

Field production of PPTM varietal blends does not have any negative impact on the economy, environment, or international trade. The variety registration process will continue to ensure that varieties meet minimum human and animal health and safety standards and are not detrimental to the environment.

Cost of conformance of WM tolerant varietal blends with additional certification requirements

  1. (i) Cost to the CFIA for monitoring

    There will be minor incremental costs to the CFIA for variety verification testing of PPTM varietal blends, for monitoring purposes, to ensure conformance with the specified proportions of the susceptible and tolerant varieties in the blend. The total number of marketplace monitoring seed samples tested each year by the CFIA will not change from the current level. However, monitoring to ensure optimal ratios of pest tolerant and susceptible varieties in samples of the PPTM varietal blends will be a new type of testing. This new type of testing is estimated to cost the CFIA less than $10,000 per year and can be carried out with existing resources.

  2. (ii) Cost to seed growers for certification of seed of PPTM varietal blends

    In order to extend the efficacy of these specific plant pest tolerance characteristics, plant breeders will specify the required proportions of the tolerant and susceptible varieties in the blended seed lots. Seed growers will assume additional costs for ensuring the prescribed proportions of the tolerant and susceptible varieties in the seed lots and for the remediation of non-conforming seed lots when required.

    For WM tolerant varietal blends, the cost to test a seed lot to verify the proportion of the varieties will vary according to the pedigreed status of the seed. Select status seed lots will require testing of a sample of 1 000 individual seeds at a cost of $400 per test. Foundation and Registered status seed lots will require testing of a sample of 400 seeds at $175 per test. Certified status seed lots will require testing of 200 seeds at $100 per test.

    It is estimated that approximately 400 fields of WM tolerant varietal blends were eligible for certification in 2009 (80 fields of Select status seed, 45 Foundation, 105 Registered, and 170 Certified).

    Based on these estimates, seed testing to confirm the proportions of the varieties would cost seed growers approximately $75,250 for seed produced in 2009 [(80 Select fields × $400/test) + (45 Foundation × $175/test) + (105 Registered × $175/test) + (170 Certified × $100/test)]. It is anticipated that the cost of testing will decrease significantly as the testing methods become more streamlined.

    It is estimated that in 2009 less than 2% of pedigreed seed (appropriately 30 lots or 6 000 metric tonnes) of WM tolerant varietal blends would have required remediation due to non-conformance to the prescribed ratios. Remediation consists of blending the lot with additional seed of one of the varieties in the blend to achieve the appropriate ratio. The current cost for remediation blending is estimated at approximately $18 per metric tonne. Therefore, the remediation costs incurred by seed growers would have been approximately $108,000 in 2009 (6 000 metric tonnes × $18/tonne).

    The amendments do not impact the date at which PPTM varietal blends could be brought to market.

  3. (iii) Cost to wheat producers

    Currently, most wheat producers in western Canada buy new Certified seed only every three to four years and plant farm-saved seed in the interim years. In order to foster the appropriate management practices to extend the longevity of the plant pest tolerance characteristic, seed distributors will require a wheat producer purchasing Certified status seed of WM tolerant varietal blends to sign a stewardship agreement. Under the terms of the agreement the producer may plant farm-saved seed for only one generation after the original purchase of Certified status seed. If the producer plants farm-saved seed in subsequent years, the producer agrees to pay $100 to the distributor for each acre sown with the farm-saved seed. It is expected that this will effectively discourage the use of farm-saved seed of WM tolerant varietal blends beyond one generation past Certified status.

  4. (iv) Projected incremental cost-benefit statement

The detailed projected incremental cost-benefit statement provided below consists of quantified costs averaged over the 10-year period from 2011 to 2020, and qualitative impacts on seed growers and grain producers from wheat midge in Canada.

Table 1. Projected incremental cost-benefit statement — WM tolerant PPTM varietal blends

Costs, Benefits and Distribution

Stakeholders

Year 2011

Interim Years

Final Year 2020

Annual Average

A. QUANTIFIED IMPACTS IN $ (DISCOUNTED @ 8%)

Costs

CFIA

$9,440

$5,650

$7,400

 

Seed growers (testing)

$72,490

$43,340

$56,810

 

Seed growers (remediation)

$102,000

$60,980

$79,930

Total costs

 

$183,930

$109,970

$144,140

B. QUANTIFIED IMPACTS IN NON-$ — RISK ASSESSMENT (e.g. mortality, morbidity…)

Positive impacts

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

Negative impacts

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

C. QUALITATIVE IMPACTS

Positive

Seed growers

  • Enhanced ability of seed growers to meet market demand by using WM tolerant PPTM varietal blends.
  • Increased demand for seed of WM tolerant PPTM varietal blends. WM tolerant PPTM varietal blends are expected to account for a significant portion of western Canada’s wheat production.
  • Reduced economic losses resulting from the negative impacts of WM infestation on wheat seed crop yield and seed quality.
  • Environmental and health benefits from decreased pesticide use.
  • Maintain long-term efficacy of the WM tolerance characteristic.

Grain producers

  • Maintain Canada’s reputation as a supplier of high quality grain to the world market.
  • Maintain or increase ability of producers to meet market demand and supply world market with high-quality wheat for milling.
  • Reduced economic losses from wheat yield reductions and downgrading resulting from small or damaged wheat kernels due to WM infestation.
  • Environmental benefits from decreased pesticide use.
  • Maintain long-term efficacy of the WM tolerance characteristic.

Negative

Seed growers

  • Slightly increased cost for purchase of pedigreed seed of WM tolerant PPTM varietal blends.
  • Additional cost and time for testing and remediation of seed lots.

Grain producers

  • Slightly increased cost for purchase of certified seed of WM tolerant PPTM varietal blends.
  • Limiting use of farm saved seed to one generation past certified status seed, as specified in stewardship agreement, will require more frequent purchase of certified seed of WM tolerant varietal blends.

Rationale

These amendments remove an impediment to the uptake of a new strategy for the management of plant pest tolerance characteristics in some varieties of crop plants, which should stimulate innovation and investment in the future development of PPTM varietal blends for other crop/pest complexes and minimize costs incurred by the Government, the seed industry and grain producers. The use of PPTM varietal blends has the potential to have significant positive impacts on the agricultural economy and the environment.

Impacts on international trade

These amendments will have no direct impact on international trade. However, by removing an impediment to the uptake of PPTM varietal blends, it may have a positive impact on Canada’s current reputation as a supplier of high quality grain by enhancing the ability of Canadian producers to supply high quality grain to the world market and improving Canada’s international competitive position.

Consultation

These amendments are not controversial and have strong support from stakeholders in the seed and crop sectors. Consensus on the need for the amendments has been achieved through informal and formal meetings and discussions from 2007 to 2011 with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB), the Canadian Grain Commission (CGC), the Canadian Seed Growers’ Association (CSGA), the Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF), the Canadian Seed Trade Association (CSTA) as well as seed distributors and crop producers.

The amendments were pre-published in the Canada Gazette, Part Ⅰ, on November 6, 2010, followed by a 30-day comment period during which interested parties were invited to make representations concerning the amendments. During the 30-day pre-publication comment period, a written submission from a major commercial seed producer was received as well as verbal comments from participants at the semi-annual meeting of the CSTA held in Winnipeg, November 17 and 18, 2010. The CFIA has reviewed each of the submissions which, apart from a few concerns, are in general, supportive of the amendments.

  • It had been proposed that the definition of PPTM varietal blends, include a requirement for CSGA approval of the PPTM varietal blend. A major commercial seed producer noted that while this could be useful for blended production, for blends of previously certified seed lots it would add an unnecessary burden to the marketing of PPTM varietal blends. The CFIA agrees and has removed this requirement.
  • It had been proposed to permit the use of a modified variety name for advertising a PPTM varietal blend, consisting of the name of the tolerant variety followed by the initialism VB for “varietal blend.” Some comments indicated that there were other initialisms that should be allowed as well. The CFIA has reviewed these comments and has determined that the use of a suffix such as VB (or MV in French), does not constitute a modified variety name, will not contravene subsection 10(2) of the Regulations, and will not lead to confusion in the market place. Therefore, the provision to permit the use of a modified variety name has been dropped from the amendments.
  • It was suggested by a stakeholder that PPTM varietal blends of corn seed be exempted from the requirements of paragraph 23(f) that every package of seed corn that is a mixture of two or more varieties carry the name and percentage of each of the component varieties, the approximate corn heat unit rating, or the designation “early,” “medium” or “late,” as appropriate. The CFIA agrees that such an exemption will reduce the regulatory burden on the seed corn sector without compromising the truthfulness or accuracy of the information on the label. Paragraph 23(f) is, therefore, amended to provide an exemption for PPTM varietal blends of corn from these requirements intended only for silage corn varieties.
  • The CSGA noted that for WM tolerant varietal blends a majority of the costs will be incurred by seed growers while a majority of the benefits will accrue to grain producers. However, the additional costs incurred by the seed producers may be offset by a relatively small increase in the selling price of the seed.

Stakeholders have stated that, overall, this regulatory development initiative is a positive step and implements changes and clarifications to the Regulations that will benefit all stakeholders, regulators, variety developers, seed and grain producers, and support the introduction and wide scale adoption of new technologies such as PPTM varietal blends.

The data and estimates mentioned are supported by consultations and communications with several seed industry associations and government agencies including the CGC, the CWB, the WGRF, the CSTA, and AAFC.

Implementation, enforcement and service standards

Implementation

These amendments clarify the requirements for grading and labelling of PPTM varietal blends. The amendments will not have a significant impact on CFIA resources. Prior to the coming into force of the amendments, the CFIA’s Seed Section will communicate with the staff of the CFIA’s Operations Branch as well as staff at the CFIA’s Saskatoon Laboratory — Seed Science and Technology Section and at the CFIA’s Ottawa Plant Laboratories (Fallowfield) to establish the requirements for marketplace monitoring and variety verification testing.

The CSGA is responsible for approving the standards and procedures for testing and remediating seed lots to achieve the prescribed ratios of tolerant and susceptible varieties in the PPTM varietal blends to meet those standards. A crop certificate issued by the CSGA is required for the grading and sale of all pedigreed seed of a variety grown in Canada. For seed lots of PPTM varietal blends, the CSGA will issue a crop certificate only when the tolerant and susceptible varieties are in the prescribed ratio. On average, the crop certificate is issued by the CSGA within two days of confirmation that the appropriate crop standards and other requirements have been met.

Enforcement

The CFIA will conduct seed certification and marketplace monitoring activities for PPTM varietal blends in the same way as those activities are carried out for other types of seed. This will include crop inspection, label and advertising reviews and drawing and testing samples from targeted and random seed lots in the marketplace.

Service standards

There are no new or additional service standards associated with these amendments. The CSGA will continue to issue crop certificates within two days of receiving confirmation that all of the standards and other requirements have been met.

Performance measurement and evaluation

The success of the amendments to the Regulations will be measured in the level of compliance with the specific requirements in the Regulations for grading and labelling of PPTM varietal blends. Additional education and support will be provided to seed graders and seed establishments during the initial period of adjustment to enhance industry compliance with the new regulatory requirements for PPTM varietal blends.

Monitoring of seed in the marketplace is a routine activity of the CFIA and will include monitoring of PPTM varietal blends. Compliance rates for seed of PPTM varietal blends sold in the marketplace will be reviewed annually. Should significant non-compliance be evident, the CFIA will communicate with the industry to further clarify the requirements and will increase monitoring and enforcement activities as appropriate. It is expected that the compliance rates of PPTM varietal blends will be high since the Regulations clearly establish the requirements.

The development of PPTM varietal blends for other crop/pest complexes will be an indicator that the amendments support innovation and provide options for plant breeders and agricultural producers.

Contacts

English

Michael Scheffel
National Manager
Seed Section
Field Crops Division
Plant Health and Biosecurity Directorate
Policy and Programs Branch
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
59 Camelot Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0Y9
Telephone: 613-773-7142
Fax: 613-773-7144
Email: seedsemence@inspection.gc.ca

French

Brian Lemon
Director
Field Crops Division
Plant Health and Biosecurity Directorate
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
59 Camelot Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0Y9
Telephone: 613-773-7129
Fax: 613-773-7144
Email: seedsemence@inspection.gc.ca

Footnote a
S.C. 2001, c. 4, s. 117

Footnote b
R.S., c. S-8

Footnote c
S.C. 2001, c. 4, s. 64

Footnote d
R.S., c. 20 (4th Supp.)

Footnote 1
C.R.C., c. 1400