New testing requirements for potato cyst nematode
By Potatoes in Canada
May 21, 2014, Ottawa – The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) have adopted revised guidelines to manage potato cyst nematode (PCN) that are meant to support potato growers, help facilitate international trade, and maintain protection against the pest.
Effective immediately, seed potato growers can be eligible to export three crops without any additional soil sampling and testing, if their fields have been tested twice and determined not to be infested with PCN. In the past, seed potato growers were required to undergo sampling and testing for every crop of seed potatoes destined for the United States.
Small potato tuber samples may now be exported to the U.S. without any additional soil sampling and testing if they were produced in a field that has been tested and determined not to be infested with PCN.
"The revised PCN guidelines will help farmers take advantage of trade opportunities with less paperwork, fewer delays and lower costs," according to a press release from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
While PCN does not pose a risk to human health, it is recognized internationally as a destructive plant pest of economic importance and, therefore, a quarantine pest for the United States and Canada.
Growers who intend to ship seed potatoes to the U.S. are encouraged to contact their local CFIA office for more information and to schedule any soil sampling and testing that may be required.