Potatoes in Canada

News Business & Policy
GoC highlights new measures to enhance viability of P.E.I. potato industry


May 4, 2022
By Potatoes in Canada

Topics

The Government of Canada recently highlighted new measures to help ensure the long-term sustainability of the potato industry on Prince Edward Island. These new measures come only weeks after the United States government resumed imports of P.E.I. potatoes to the market with restrictions, which the government says came at “a critical time for the industry.”

The federal 2022 budget included $28 million in additional funding for the industry. This includes $16 million over two years, beginning in the 2022-23 growing season, to the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency to support long-term investments and assist in stabilizing the province’s sector and supply chain; it also includes $12 million over the same time period for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to accelerate the investigation into the latest detection of potato wart to help prevent its spread and allow for full trade to resume with the U.S. as soon as possible.

The CFIA will use the funds to fill more than 35 positions. It will accelerate soil sampling and testing, including an expansion of current lab capacity. Targeted completion is in 2023.

Advertisement

Beyond the federal support allocated in this year’s budget, the Government of Canada also provided a Stay of Default for 2021 outstanding potato advances, which will allow growers with additional time and flexibility to pay back the estimated $20 million in advance payments. Growers who received support from the Prince Edward Island Federation of Agriculture (PEIFA) 2021 Advance Payments Program and are in god standing are eligible for the stay. Growers may also be eligible for compensation under the Potato Wart Compensation Regulations.