Voluntary biosecurity standard for greenhouse crops
March 9, 2016, Ottawa — The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), in conjunction with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and sector organizations, has completed a new voluntary biosecurity standard that will protect Canada’s greenhouse, nursery and floriculture sectors from plant pests.
In 2014, the CFIA came together with AAFC, provincial governments and sector organizations to form the Greenhouse, Nursery and Floriculture Biosecurity Advisory Committee (GNFBAC).
Now, after nearly two years of collaboration, the GNFBAC has completed a farm-level biosecurity standard for the Canadian greenhouse, nursery and floriculture sectors. Three sector-specific producer guidance documents that will support the new standard are currently under development.
This voluntary standard will:
• Provide guidelines for biosecurity, including prevention and integrated pest management.
• Promote a consistent approach for managing risks of plant pests.
• Improve the greenhouse, nursery and floriculture sector’s knowledge of the risks associated with plant pests.
• Help identify gaps in current biosecurity procedures.
GROWING FORWARD 2 FUNDING
The standard can be adopted in its entirety or can supplement existing on-farm biosecurity programs. Funding to develop this standard has been provided under the Growing Forward 2 Agricultural Policy Framework.
“The Canadian Horticultural Council is pleased to have supported the CFIA as industry co-chair in the development of the Greenhouse, Nursery and Floriculture Biosecurity Standard,” said greenhouse committee chair Linda Delli Santi.
Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay added that greenhouse vegetable growers have long embraced the essential concepts of biosecurity and food safety in general.
“While comprehensive standards have existed in certain provinces, this national voluntary standard provides a basis for all regions to adhere to a common practice and this is good for the industry.”