Markets and Marketing
Canada looks at ways to support movement of P.E.I. potatoes
September 12, 2023 By Potatoes in Canada
Canada’s Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lawrence MacAulay, met with staff and representatives of the Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) Potato Board Sept. 8.
Meeting with the board for the first time in his current tenure as the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, MacAulay reiterated the importance of working collaboratively together with the board and all potato growers in P.E.I. in the best interests of the Island’s potato industry, which contributes more than $1.3 billion to the Island economy.
Following the completion of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s (CFIA) investigation related to the two 2021 detections of potato wart in P.E.I., the minister and the CFIA committed to engaging with the industry on next steps. This will include criteria for designating Pest Free Places of Production (PFPP) in P.E.I. to support the movement of commodities including seed potatoes off of the island. While over 95 per cent of P.E.I. potatoes continue to remain eligible for export to the rest of Canada and the United States, P.E.I.’s primary export market, MacAulay highlighted the importance of working together with growers as they maintain and enhance control measures, such as biosecurity and traceability activities to maintain market access for one of Canada’s critical agricultural sectors.
The CFIA will continue to engage with industry on program elements to renew the National Potato Wart Response Plan and work toward implementation in 2024.
MacAulay and the board all agreed to remain engaged on this matter.
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