Canary Seed Development Commission of Saskatchewan


January 13, 2020

Canary Seed Producers Request Licensing and Bonding

At the Annual General Meeting of the Canary Seed Development Commission of Saskatchewan (CSDCS), Canary seed producers voted 25 to 2 by secret ballot in favour of the following resolution:

Be it resolved that the Canary Seed Development Commission of Saskatchewan formally requests that Canary seed be included as an official crop under the Canada Grain Act, thereby bringing it under the licensing and bonding provisions of the Canadian Grain Commission.

The resolution was brought forward to the AGM by the Board of Directors to gauge support for the action. The vote followed a presentation with question and answer session by Patti Miller, Chief Commissioner of the Canadian Grain Commission.

Canary seed is the largest acreage crop on the Prairies not covered by licensing and bonding provisions. Following the financial collapse of ILTA Grain last year, 44 Canary seed producers were left unpaid for deliveries worth more than $2 million. Other crops were eligible for full compensation provided they were within the 90-day time allowance for coverage.

“Based on the result of the vote, the CSDCS Board of Directors has a clear mandate,” says incoming board chair Darren Yungmann, who farms near St. Gregor, SK. “Letters will be sent to the Canadian Grain Commission and federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau to initiate the process to bring about this regulatory change.”

“Canary seed has never had official grades and there’s some concern about how grades will be implemented as the crop moves to be part of the Canada Grain Act,” notes Kevin Hursh, CSDCS executive director. “Our hope is that grades can be implemented in such a way as to not be a burden on producers or buyers.”

Although not as onerous as a change in legislation, regulatory change still involves a process that will take time. In the interim, producers can limit their liability on Canary seed sales by selling smaller amounts and getting paid before delivering more.

For further information, contact:

Darren Yungmann
CSDCS chair

Kevin Hursh
CSDCS executive director

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