Consultation on regulatory requirements for the environmental release of plants

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is seeking feedback on proposed guidance for the environmental release of plants, to allow stakeholders to better understand the requirements that are relevant to them in the context of new and emerging technologies such as gene editing. The comment period ends September 16, 2021.

Canada’s Seeds Regulations describe regulatory requirements for the release of plants that may impact the Canadian environment. The regulatory requirements are applicable to new plants, including plants with novel traits (PNT). The CFIA is seeking feedback on proposed guidance for Part V – Release of Seed under the Seeds Regulations, with the objective of clarifying which plants are subject to Part V and which plants are exempt.

Health Canada (HC) held a related consultation until May 24, 2021, regarding proposed new guidance for Novel Food Regulations focused on plant breeding. The guidelines aim to allow stakeholders to better understand when a pre-authorization assessment is required for new plants, including PNT.

Both CFIA and HC have authorities specifically applicable to PNT. The CFIA is responsible for regulating the environmental release, importation, and the use in livestock feeds of PNT. HC is responsible for assessing their human health safety in foods and approving their use in commerce.

Stakeholders may participate in CFIA’s consultation by:
1. Reading the summary of guidance for determining whether a plant is subject to Part V of the Seeds Regulations;
2. Reading the full draft guidance for determining whether a plant is subject to Part V of the Seeds Regulations; and,
3. Completing the online questionnaire.

Questions about this consultation may be sent to the CFIA’s Plant Biosafety Office via cfia.pbo-pbo.acia@canada.ca

For more information: 
U.S. Department of Agriculture
+1 202 720 2791
askusda@usda.gov 
www.usda.gov
 

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