The following piece is from our sister publication, Germination.
After this week’s election result, Canada’s newest seed industry organization is optimistic about the future of Seed Regulatory Modernization (SRM) and other initiatives.
In a news release issued today, Seeds Canada and its president, Ellen Sparry, congratulated Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Liberal party on its victory. Trudeau’s government was returned to power with 158 seats in Monday’s election.
“The Canadian seed sector is a key driver of our country’s economic growth and a significant source for food security and climate change mitigation solutions. Continued investment, research, and a proper regulatory framework should be a key priority for the new government,” Sparry said.
“It all starts with seed, and quality seed and varieties are a vital resource for the challenges we face today. We look forward to working with the Liberal party — and all decision makers — to help Canada’s seed sector thrive for the benefit of all Canadians.”
Sparry added that “Farmers, seed growers, analysts, breeders, distributors, processors and all those along the seed value chain are calling on decision makers to prioritize and maximize the potential of the seed sector as an economic driver and partner in climate change solutions.”
Seeds Canada will be continuing its conversations with decision makers across all federal parties on priority items for the sector, ranging from the SRM initiative and plant breeding rights to climate change mitigation and technological advancements for environmental sustainability, she goes on to say.
As part of the seed regulatory modernization (SRM) process, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency will be reviewing Canada’s Seeds Regulations to improve responsiveness and consistency, reduce complexity, become adaptable and flexible to function in the modern, fast-changing world, and protect producers and consumers by strengthening existing requirements.
Tyler McCann, government relations consultantt for Seeds Canada, said in an interview Sept. 21 that an expected cabinet shuffle could have some impact on the SRM process, but he expects the process to be relatively unaffected by the election result, which saw little change in the makeup of the House of Commons.
“Even if there is a different agriculture minister, regulatory modernization isn’t a political issue, really. By and large, I expect it will be status quo in terms of continuing with the process to modernize our seed regulations,” McCann said.
The SRM process was put on hold when the election was called, but McCann said industry stakeholders expect things to get rolling again in the coming days once the new government is in place and any new cabinet changes are announced.