December 17, 2021

Happy Holidays from CSGA President

The holiday season is upon us again. I hope you and your family are safe and in happy holiday spirits!

This past year has again been out of the ordinary for us all. I would have liked to have had the opportunity to travel across the provinces to meet you in person and shake your hand. Still, as the pandemic continues, I’m happy to have the chance to have gathered virtually, nonetheless.

This year has seen many steps forward for CSGA. The development and launch of the CSGA 2.0 Business Plan – our roadmap to CSGA’s continued modernization and vision for a strong seed sector. Of course, our new leadership team of Doug Miller and Caroline Lafontaine, with 25 years of CSGA experience combined. The CFIA initiated the first phase to modernize the Seed Regulations, and CSGA continues to work hard at SRM to build the next-generation seed system. And this year’s western drought has been immensely difficult for many of our members and our communities. 

I see a bright future for the Association. Through continued collaboration and communication, we can provide even more value for members, stakeholders, and Canadian agriculture as a whole.

My sincerest thanks and wishes for a warm and peaceful holiday season to you all – our members, stakeholders, staff, Board of Directors, and our Canadian farmers who bring us our holiday turkeys, hams, veggies, grains, eggnog and of course, Santa’s milk.

Last year I toasted to 2021 as a time for new beginnings – with renewed hope for a return to normalcy, I’ll do the same for 2022!

Sincerely,

Joe Rennick
President

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Circular 6 Notice of Changes

The Canadian Regulations and Procedures for Pedigreed Seed Crop Production, known as Circular 6, sets out the requirements that a seed grower and a seed crop must meet for seed crop certification. CSGA continues to improve the existing Circular 6 requirements and standards and develop certification requirements for new crop types when needed.

In October 2021, CSGA launched a consultation with members and stakeholders on potential revisions to Circular 6 put forth by the Regulatory Services Committee concerning the mechanical purity standards and the isolation and previous land use requirements relating to the presence of buckwheat in cereals and cereals in buckwheat.

This change addresses issues with immature buckwheat plants causing cereal seed crops to either be declined certification entirely or demoted to a lower class. Buckwheat does not pose a significant risk to cereal seed production or vice versa. With modern seed cleaning equipment, buckwheat and cereal seed can be removed from one another. 

CSGA’s Board of Directors has accepted the proposed changes, and, as such, regulation and standard changes have been made to Circular 6 effective for the 2022 growing season. We thank everyone who took the time to provide feedback during the consultation.

Additional revisions have been made to the General Requirements for All Pedigreed Seed Crops. This includes the addition of a reference to CSGA’s Recertification Policy for transparency, clarification of what is required to validate a crop certificate, and specification of the quantity of parent seed planted as a condition of eligibility for certification. Several requirements have been removed related to issuing a crop certificate after April 30 and the number of varieties and crop kinds that a seed grower can produce.

CSGA is committed to protecting CSGA assets and intellectual property and has obtained a copyright for Circular 6. This follows the best practices of other seed certification standards bodies, including the Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies (AOSCA) (of which CSGA is a founding member) and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Seed Schemes. The copyright prevents republication without permission; however, the document will continue to be available on the CSGA website. 

For more information on the changes to Circular 6 in 2022, please read the Notice of Changes. The official revised version of Circular 6 will be available on the CSGA website on February 1, 2022.  If you have questions on these revisions, please contact the CSGA office.

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CSGA Supports Health Canada’s Final Guidance on Plant Breeding Innovation

The Canada Grains Council (CGC) working group on plant breeding innovation (PBI) met on Wednesday, December 12, 2021. Updates were provided, including the pending release of Health Canada’s final guidance on PBI.

The revised guidelines will provide greater clarity, predictability, and transparency regarding the regulation of novel foods derived from plants, including those developed using gene-editing technologies, to provide an efficient and predictable pathway to commercialization for new products.

CSGA appreciates the efforts of the CGC, CropLife Canada and Seeds Canada on communicating the benefits of PBI and on Health Canada’s commitment to taking a science-based and pragmatic approach to its guidance for PBI, which is critical to helping Canadian agriculture realize its full potential.

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Reminder to Complete Your Digital Seed Crop Certificates

Growers and Assignees are reminded to please complete their digital seed crop certificates and settle their accounts. Please log in to SeedCert and review your account to see what may be outstanding. The resource section on SeedCert’s home page includes a “How To” video and PDF guide to help guide you through the process.

If you need assistance with any outstanding seed crop certificates, please email us or call 613-236-0497, ext. 8803.

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CSGA Office Closed for the Holidays

The CSGA office will be closed for the holidays starting 4 pm ET, Thursday, December 23 and will reopen at 8 am ET on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

We hope you will enjoy the holiday with your family and friends. We wish you all the warmest holiday cheer!

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Contact Us

CSGA staff are here to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact us. Remember the CSGA national office operates in the Eastern Time (ET) zone.

Telephone: (613) 236-0497
Email: communications@seedgrowers.ca
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 8455, Ottawa, Ontario, K1G 3T1
Courier Address: 21 Florence St, Ottawa, Ontario K2P 0W6

Click here for complete staff contact information.