Saskatchewan Pulse Growers indicates progress is being made in negotiations to ensure stable continued market access to our biggest customer.
India wants to end the use of the methyl bromide---a fumigant harmful to the ozone layer.
In late March, the Indian government granted a last-minute three month extension to a waiver allowing Canadian pulse crops into the country without the required fumigation. Those treatments occur at Indian ports and are designed to protect domestic farms from the import of specific insects.
The Government of India posted draft amendments to its Plant Quarantine Order last week. Those amendments suggest that it is considering Canada's assurances that our cold weather and additional safeguards may be sufficient. However, it also mentions switching to an alternative fumigant called phosphine, which does not have ozone issues.
Pulse Canada Chair Lee Moats---a farmer from Riceton, SK---is encouraged by the draft.
"They appear to recognize that Canada has a systems approach that will protect India's concerns to do with pests that they don't want to have. But they also have an area talking about fumigation with phosphine and that does pose some concerns for us."
The proposed use of phosphine would be subject to temperature limitations under Canadian labeling.
Moats is hopeful that India can be assured of a minimal pest risk from Canada without the need for fumigation.
Canada recently received a three month extension on the fumigation regulation from India, which expires at the end of June.
Over $1.1 billion of pulse crops were sold to India last year, accounting for 27.5 per cent of Canadian pulse exportsAs Canada's leader in pulse crop production, Saskatchewan's 17,000 pulse growers produce 99 per cent of Canada' s chickpeas, 84 per cent of lentils and 49 per cent of Canada's dry peas.