October 3, 2013

Canada’s Grain Producers Welcome Ontario Government Decision

OTTAWA, October 3, 2013 – The Ontario Ministry of the Environment recently rejected calls for new regulations pertaining to the use of Roundup Alfalfa. This is welcome news by members of the Grain Growers of Canada. “The decision to support the existing regulatory framework avoiding duplication acknowledges the rigor of the 2005 food, feed and environmental safety approval,” said Mr. Jim Facette, Executive Director, Grain Growers of Canada.

The Ministry of the Environment received an Application for Review under the Environment Bill of Rights requesting new regulation. The department concluded that a new provincial regulation making activities on the sale and distribution of genetically modified (GM) seed subject to the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act would overlap with the existing federal regulation.

In a letter to the Honourable Jim Bradley thanking his department for this decision, Mr. Facette said, “It is important as we move forward to be mindful of unnecessary duplication and the need to maintain a science based approach.”

In Canada, the regulation of GM traits in novel seeds and plants used for crop purposes is the responsibility of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada. The CFIA’s environment safety assessment takes into account the potential of the plant to become a weed; to create a weed by cross-pollinating with another plant and the potential impact on biodiversity.

The Grain Growers of Canada is an umbrella organization with 14 provincial and regional grower groups from across the country involved in the grain, pulse and oilseed sectors. Representing tens of thousands of successful wheat, durum, barley, canola, oat, corn, pea, lentil, rye and triticale farmers, the Grain Growers is well known as the national voice of Canadian grain farmers.

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