In the fall of 2011, a pilot project for Certified soybean seed crop inspection was carried out in the Chatham and London areas of Southern Ontario. It was developed and guided by the Seed Industry–Government Working Group (IGWG), which includes the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), the Canadian Seed Growers’ Association (CSGA), the Canadian Seed Institute (CSI) and the Canadian Seed Trade Association (CSTA).
For the project, the CFIA trained, evaluated and authorized second-party and third-party seed crop inspection services who worked under CFIA oversight to perform soybean seed crop inspection. It was an expansion of current authorized seed crop inspection programs for Certified hybrid corn in Ontario and Certified hybrid canola in Alberta.
- Seven private inspectors were trained and authorized to conduct soybean seed crop inspection.
- Pioneer Hi-Bred Ltd. (second-party inspection model) inspected 191 fields producing Certified seed that were assigned to Pioneer Hi-Bred Ltd.
- 20/20 Seed Labs Inc. (third-party inspection model) inspected 43 fields producing Certified seed that were not assigned to Pioneer Hi-Bred Ltd.
- In total, approximately 13,000 acres of Certified soybean seed crop production were inspected by authorized inspectors.
- 15 fields per authorized inspector were check inspected by the CFIA.
The results of the pilot are being reviewed and analyzed by the Seed IGWG. Key points under consideration include:
- comparison of the authorized inspection results of selected crops with the results of check inspections;
- producer feedback on timing and related impacts of crop inspection reports for fields that were inspected by an authorized inspector and check inspected by the CFIA;
- effectiveness of internal and external communications;
- challenges of CFIA check inspections for crops like soybean that are inspected at maturity;
The Seed IGWG will review and evaluate the results of the pilot project to determine next steps. The results of this analysis will be included in a report to be completed in the spring, 2012.
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