Canada Hits Pause of MRL Reviews Including for Glyphosate

Potato field being sprayed
Photo: NT Franklin from Pixabay

The following piece is from our sister publication, the Alberta Seed Guide.

The Canadian government has decided to pause the proposed increases to Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs), including for glyphosate, for the time being, a news release on August 4 says. This means there will be no increases to MRLs until at least spring 2022.

The government has also decided it will begin consultations on specific provisions of the Pest Control Products Act (2002) to consider, among other elements, ways to balance how pesticide review processes are initiated in Canada and increase transparency.

“Canadians rightfully expect transparency in any decision regarding pesticides use. Health Canada is a world-class regulator whose experts put the safety of Canadians first in everything they do,” Patty Hajdu, federal minister of health, says in the release. “The decisions announced today will give them more tools to ensure pesticides used in Canada are safe and sustainable, based on the latest available scientific evidence.”

Heath Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) pest management research, supported by Environment and Climate Change Canada, will receive a $50 million investment, the release says. There will be $42 million invested over three years in the PMRA’s human and environmental health and safety oversight and protection. Another $7 million will be in AAFC and $1 million Environment and Climate Change Canada for research, development and adoption of alternative pest management solutions.

“This funding will allow Health Canada to increase independent data generation, including new water and agricultural monitoring data. It will also allow the creation of a new expert panel process to provide advice, as appropriate, prior to evidence-based decisions of the PMRA on pesticides, including on MRLs,” the release says.

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