March 25th, 2022 – OTTAWA – The Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) was pleased to see the recent announcement from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), noting that exports will resume for PEI table stock potatoes to the US under specified conditions.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) voluntarily suspended the export of PEI potatoes based on the discovery of potato wart on two of the island’s already regulated fields. This suspension has resulted in significant economic losses and a tremendous amount of uncertainty for PEI potato farmers as they finalize seeding plans for the coming year. CFA is still seeking full details relating to this announcement and its associated effects on trade.
Tablestock exports to the US are a significant market for island producers and the full restoration of this market is of critical importance to PEI potato growers and the broader PEI economy. Meanwhile, PEI seed potato growers are still subject to trade restrictions that will require continued focus.
Nonetheless, the USDA announcement is a positive development and an important step in the resumption of trade for PEI and PEI potato growers. CFA is awaiting an expected federal order from APHIS outlining the additional mitigation measures required and that CFIA will then immediate resume authorizing PEI tablestock exports to the US.
“While this is an excellent first step in getting PEI’s potato exporting capabilities back to normal, there is still more work to be done and CFA is seeking clarity on the timelines and continued risk mitigation measures involved. This news should come as a great relief to many farmers across PEI and we thank Minister Bibeau and her colleagues for their continued efforts on this front,” said Mary Robinson, CFA President.
CFA will continue to monitor this situation and ensure that the needs of Canadian farmers are met.