CropLife Canada says it is pleased with the recent ruling from the federal court that stands firmly in support of the Pest Management Regulatory Agency’s (PMRA) authority to set phase-in periods for amended pesticide registrations.
The legal case, which was brought forward by a number of activist groups – the David Suzuki Foundation, Friends of the Earth Canada, Équiterre and Wilderness Committee – challenged the PMRA’s authority to set reasonable timelines for implementing label changes for a pesticide following a re-evaluation or special review decision.
Without providing any benefits to Canadians, a result in favour of the plaintiffs would have handcuffed Canadian farmers by imposing immediate changes to use patterns for pesticides without considering disruptions for businesses and farmers, and the impact it would have on the competitiveness of the agriculture industry in Canada. According to CropLife Canada, some segments of the industry would have experienced immediate removal of tools from their toolbox for which they would have no alternatives.
Also of concern to CropLife Canada was the significant amount of unpredictability in the regulatory system that would have driven innovation away from Canada, costing farmers, the Canadian economy and Canadian consumers as a whole.
The court’s ruling confirms that the PMRA can continue to protect the health and safety of Canadians and the environment while at the same time recognizing the practical implications of changing what’s available to farmers to protect their crops.
CropLife Canada acted as an intervenor in this case and as such had the opportunity to provide context on the broader implications this decision would have on the industry.
Source: CropLife Canada December 19, 2019 news release