Standing policy: Crop Protection

The OFVGA believes the industry must have access to crop protection materials that are competitively priced and are being used in countries that compete directly with domestic producers.

The OFVGA agrees that products harmful to the environment and to the public at large should not be registered, or be used on products in Canada, or on products imported into Canada.

The OFVGA believes that it is in the best interests of the industry, society, and the environment to have well-educated and trained producers working with pesticide application.

  • 2001-09 Importing of Produce With Non-Registered Chemicals

    WHEREAS the Canadian Government has either refused or has been very slow in approving the registration of much needed chemicals for use on Canadian horticultural crops; 

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Canadian government stop the importation of fruits and vegetables into this country that are sprayed with chemicals that are not registered for use in Canada.

  • 2001-21 Harmonization of Availability of Crop Protection Materials with the USA

    WHEREAS Canadian producers continue to be disadvantaged by limited access to crop protection materials compared to their counterparts in the USA; and

    WHEREAS many newer technologies are much more Integrated Pest Management-friendly; and

    WHEREAS IPM and marketing are becoming much more tied together; and

    WHEREAS progress has been made with the joint registration process between Canada and the USA in speeding up access to materials for Canadian producers;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the joint registration process be expanded to include more products; and

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the joint registration process be fast-tracked to maintain competitive advantage for Canadian growers.

  • 2008-04 Compensation For Invasive Species Quarantines

    WHEREAS Minister Strahl was working with the produce industry on the establishment of a compensation framework; and

    WHEREAS the establishment of a compensation framework under the Plant Protection Act to balance asset losses when quarantine actions are taken by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), similar to that for the livestock industry, is required to facilitate timely reporting of quarantineable pests to the CFIA in order to limit the spread of pests and improve the feasibility of eradicative measures;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA work with the Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers (OGVG) and the Canadian Horticultural Council (CHC) to lobby Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) to ensure a compensation plan for quarantine actions is established immediately.

  • 2009-01 Sustainability and Reduced Risk Pest Management Program in Ontario

    revised 2019

    WHEREAS there has been a dramatic reduction in research, educational and extension resources available to promote and implement sustainable pest management systems in horticultural crops since the late 1990’s and;

    WHEREAS this has resulted in individual growers and commodity groups in many parts of the province not having access to qualified and experienced field consultants and/or integrated pest management scouting programs and;

    WHEREAS there are on-going significant reductions in person years in research (in both government and university) dedicated to the development of sustainable pest management strategies and programs and;

    WHEREAS there are gaps in the information needed to integrate reduced risk products, economic thresholds, pest resistance surveys and detection, and strategies to use new technologies (i.e. mating disruption) in managing insect, disease and weed pests of agricultural crops and;

    WHEREAS there is a reduced focus on providing university-based courses and programs on crop production with sustainable pest management systems, thereby restricting career choices of students interested in working in the fields of sustainable agriculture or organic production and reducing the number of pest management specialists operating in this province and;

    WHEREAS there is an urgent need to re-evaluate the various aspects of sustainable and reduced risk pest management systems in Ontario for horticultural crops (including implementation and delivery of integrated pest management programs, research, training, marketing, and R & D funding), and develop a comprehensive and doable strategy for promotion and adoption of such in Ontario’s horticulture sector and;

    WHEREAS consumers are becoming more informed and desirous of environmentally friendly pest management production systems;

    WHEREAS crop protection product re-evaluation decisions at PMRA are increasingly limiting available pest management options for growers

    THEREFORE be it resolved that OMAFRA take the lead in developing a strategic plan for the future of sustainable and reduced risk pest management programs in Ontario and;

    BE IT FURTHER resolved that OMAFRA consult with grower association representatives, crop protection industry representatives, independent consultants, researchers and OMAFRA field staff specialists to review the current state of sustainable pest management systems, identify the gaps, and develop a strategic plan in the context of enhancing the horticulture industry’s environmental performance and economic viability 


    WHEREAS there has been recent success in getting new crop protection registrations of new actives and new uses for older products, and


    WHEREAS these new products tend to be focused modes of action which are prone to resistance development in the pest populations, and


    WHEREAS these new registrations need much better timing and use direction to be both effective and that will ‘fit’ into existing Pest Management programs, and


    WHEREAS research support to both growers and extension staff in the areas of resistance detection, characterization and management has been severely curtailed at the federal level, and


    WHEREAS the research into IPM program development including the integration of new tools into these programs has also been severely limited,


    THEREFORE be it resolved that both OFVGA AND CHC lobby Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada to give top priority to the need for both resistance management and IPM integration of new tools for Insects, Diseases and Weeds.

  • 2010-03LR SevinXLR

    WHEREAS consumers want large, consistent fruit, and whereas chemical thinners are very important in the production of high quality fruit; and

    WHEREAS SevinXLR gives Ontario growers the most consistent thinning results from year to year;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA urge the government to retain the registration of SevinXLR for use of thinning in apples.

  • 2010-05 CFIA Establish More Stringent Import Protocols for Produce Entering Canada

    WHEREAS destructive invasive pests are increasingly entering Canada;


    AND WHEREAS such pests pose a significant risk to crop production;


    AND WHEREAS the occurrence of such pests in Canada, or interception of such pests on produce exported from Canada, pose a significant risk to market access;


    AND WHEREAS the loss of production or market access would devastate the sector;


    AND WHEREAS the CFIA uses science-based PRAs as the basis for establishing import and pest management protocols;


    AND WHEREAS the CFIA has responsibility for protecting Canada from such pests, and the CBSA the responsibility for inspecting products entering Canada;


    THEREFORE be it resolved that the CFIA be directed to establish more stringent import protocols for produce entering Canada in order to prevent the entry of invasive pests and fully disclose the science behind such decisions as well as its definition of the various levels of risk;


    AND BE IT FURTHER resolved that the CBSA be directed to increase inspections on imported produce based on the CFIA’s protocols.

  • 2011-08LR Soil Fumigants

    WHEREAS soil fumigants are an integral part of strawberry fruit and plant production in Ontario, and for most other fruit, all ginseng, and many vegetable crops; and

    WHEREAS the PMRA is reviewing the registrations of all soil fumigants for Canada; and

    WHEREAS the loss of soil fumigants for Canada would give our American competitors in all the above crops a huge competitive edge over Canadians since American producers have access to all fumigants registered in Canada plus Methyl Bromide for some uses.

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA/CHC lobby the appropriate ministries, departments, companies to ensure that current uses for the product in the fruit and vegetable industry be maintained until suitable replacements are registered.

  • 2014-02 Publication 360

    revised 2019

    WHEREAS Publications 360 and 75 are used every day in the field by growers during the growing season and,

    WHEREAS crop protection information is complex and the application of the correct pesticide rates is vital for food safety and pest management,

    WHEREAS spray rigs and pesticide storage buildings are not conducive to electronic equipment and WiFi to receive electronic information while mixing and loading the spray tank,

     THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OMAF/RA continue to print all crop protection publications.

  • 2015-04LR Pre-Harvest Intervals

    WHEREAS horticulture growers in Ontario and across North America are now dealing with the invasive insect pest Spotted Wing Drosophila; and

    WHEREAS growers are now having to control this pest during harvest to save their crops; and

    WHEREAS growers in the United States have shorter pre-harvest intervals for the same active ingredients;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA and Canadian Horticultural Council (CHC) demand that the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) put in place equivalent pre-harvest intervals to our American competitors.

  • 2016-04 Spotted Wing Drosophila


    WHEREAS berry growers in Ontario and across Canada are now challenged with the management of the invasive insect pest Spotted Wing Drosophila, and

    WHEREAS growers are now having to control this pest both prior and during harvest to save their crops, and

    WHEREAS growers have limited options for control of this pest

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA and CHC demand that the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Pest management Regulatory Agency continue to provide research to manage this pest with both chemical and non-chemical methods.

  • 2016-05 Cyclamen Mite

    CYCLAMEN MITE (2016-05)

    WHEREAS strawberry growers in Ontario and across Canada are dealing with increased pressure from cyclamen mite, and

    WHEREAS the primary control product endosulfan is no longer manufactured and will no longer be allowed for use by strawberry growers after 2016, and

    WHEREAS there is only one remaining active ingredient that is marginally effective

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA and CHC demand that the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Pest management Regulatory Agency search to register additional products to manage this damaging pest

  • 2016-13 IPM Systems Specialist Position


    WHEREAS, apple farmers in Ontario have been using integrated pest management (IPM) proactively for over 30 years and have received excellent support from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs during this time;

    WHEREAS, apple farmers have moved from board spectrum pesticides to targeted, reduced risk pesticides and biological control agents using IPM programs which adapts to the changing pest dynamics in the orchard;

    WHEREAS, the introduction of new pests, such as Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) into Ontario, has the potential to decimate a well-established IPM program in apples and many other horticultural crops;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA lobby OMAFRA for the immediate continuation and staffing of the IPM Systems Specialist position to assist all horticultural farmers to ensure a strong IPM program for farmers, consumers and our environment.

  • 2017-02 Crop Protection Products


    WHEREAS Canada continues to reevaluate crop protection products; and

    WHEREAS Health Canada and the PMRA have a mandate to continue the use of crop protection products until a replacement product exists;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA and CHC lobby Health Canada to continue their commitment to not deregister crop protection products when there is no replacement product that the horticultural industry considers effective. 

  • 2017-17 On-Farm Tours For PMRA Staff

    ON-FARM TOURS FOR PMRA STAFF (2017-17)       

    WHEREAS the PMRA evaluation staff need first-hand experience of horticultural production practice; and

    WHEREAS on-farm tours have proven to be valuable to impart such knowledge; and

    WHEREAS such tours conducted in the past have been dropped for financial reasons and staff time away from their day jobs; and

    WHEREAS staff development is considered a high priority item in Health Canada;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA offer such on-farm experience to PMRA staff on an annual basis working in partnership with OMAFRA, Crop Life, CHC and other interested partners, and contribute a share of the funding to make it happen.

  • 2017-18 Real Time Record Keeping For PMRA


    WHEREAS PMRA has expressed concerns about the ability of farmers to ensure post application farm workers get adequate training and warnings about pesticide hazards; and

    WHEREAS they have proposed elimination of many uses of pesticides like Captan, Bravo, Mancozeb, Thiram, Ferbam and others; and

    WHEREAS other uses for these pesticides come with such long re-entry periods as to be useless in our production systems; and

    WHEREAS it is important to not only provide such training and instruction about pesticides to farm workers; and

    WHEREAS the documentation of such records needs to be kept on a real time basis and be available for auditing; and

    WHEREAS any such record keeping system must satisfy PMRA needs before they agree to put label warnings about post application protective gear for workers;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA work with external partners such as the CanadaGap On-Farm Food Safety Program and others to develop suitable real time record keeping systems that can meet the needs of PMRA for protection of post application workers, and thereby allow workable re-entry timeframes after pesticide application.

  • 2017-19 AAFC National Subscription For Pesticide Residue Limit Data


    WHEREAS growers and exporters need up to date information on pesticide residue limits in all potential market places; and

    WHEREAS AAFC cancelled their national subscription to such a service in 2014 under the impression that a free service available then would suffice; and

    WHEREAS the free service was eliminated leaving no available source of such residue limit data for growers and exporters to access; and

    WHEREAS such a service can be purchased by AAFC for a very reasonable cost and made available across Canada;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that CHC petition AAFC Market Access Secretariat to purchase and provide this service on an annual basis.

  • 2018-07 Pesticide Label Consistency


    WHEREAS  labels on pesticide containers are not consistent in format or color (white label with black text); and

    WHEREAS  the pesticide label is a legal document; and

    WHEREAS  farmers are diligent and read labels and are very careful when mixing crop protection materials but could always use assistance as a safety precaution;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED  that OFVGA work with CropLife Canada to develop and implement consistent format and a colour-coded label (or coloured cap) system/standard for the industry to assist farmers with crop protection application.

  • 2018-10 Impact Of Crop Protection Registration Cancellations


    WHEREAS  Health Canada’s PMRA has proposed to, or cancelled numerous crop protection products across all edible horticultural commodities; and

    WHEREAS  each commodity group has been responding to these cancellations as one-offs as they are received; and

    WHEREAS  it’s the cumulative effect of the current re-evaluation proposals that causes grower confusion as to what can be used; a severe limit on what effective products are left and a potential for a significant increase in the use of what is left that is effective;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA and CHC request that Health Canada/PMRA put ALL of their re-evaluations on hold until they convene a stakeholders meeting to plan a path forward for Crop Protection that will ensure the future sustainability of horticultural production across Canada.

  • 2018-11 Minor Use Pesticide Registration


    WHEREAS Minor Use pesticide registrations are being lost from and with already registered products as an outcome of the PMRA re-evaluation process at a faster rate than new registrations are occurring; and

    WHEREAS the existing Minor Use Program at AAFC is already at full capacity for budget, staff and priority Minor Use registration activities; and

    WHEREAS  the data needed to support and defend the existing registered Minor Use of registered products during re-evaluation are just as much or more important as for the existing program; and

    WHEREAS  the types of data needed may fall outside the existing purview of the AAFC Minor Use Program;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED  that AAFC be approached with CHC to fund another segment of Minor Use Registration activity with a separate program dedicated to development of the data demanded by PMRA to defend and maintain the minor uses of registered pesticides under re-evaluation; and

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that sufficient budget and personnel is allocated to this program very quickly so it can be immediately effective.

  • 2018-12 Pest Management Regulatory Agency Resourcing and Role as an Agency


    WHEREAS PMRA is woefully behind schedule in re-evaluations; and

    WHEREAS the upcoming re-evaluations for ‘round two’ exceeds 600 active ingredients; and

    WHEREAS they have not even started the ones originally scheduled for 2017; and

    WHEREAS PMRA has been under severe pressure to meet artificial timelines on re-evaluations from the Auditor General’s department; and

    WHEREAS PMRA is actually just a branch of Health Canada, and NOT an actual ‘Agency’ as their name implies; and

    WHEREAS they are not a ‘fit’ within the mandate, operation, priorities or budget allocation of Health Canada notwithstanding that Health has the biggest budget in cabinet, and that PMRA has seen no priority for their budget woes as a result; and

    WHEREAS PMRA will need many more staff and considerable additional budget to do the tasks that Canadians and our growers expect, and to get these tasks done correctly and on time;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Treasury Board of Canada be made aware of the PMRA financial and staffing issues so they can ensure that Health Canada provides the necessary funding for PMRA to do their job in the immediate and near futures; and

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Health Canada be requested to bestow upon PMRA their actual role as an Agency of Canada as set out many years ago, rather than as simply a branch of Health Canada.

  • 2018-13 Moratorium on Re-evaluations by Health Canada


    WHEREAS PMRA have set many ambitious targets to get ‘final’ decisions out on several key pesticides including: Captan, chlorothalonil, iprodione, ferbam, mancozeb, thiram, phosmet, lambda-cyhalothrin, and many more; and

    WHEREAS PMRA have not adequately consulted growers on the possible impacts on crop production, crop protection alternatives, international trade implications or impacts on Canadian IPM programs; and

    WHEREAS many unresolved issues remain such as labelling of the use of gloves to mitigate exposure, their use of non-Canadian and non-modern data to determine actual worker exposures for their calculations; and

    WHEREAS PMRA have not sufficiently consulted with and collaborated with their professional colleagues at the US EPA on several key matters arising from their re-evaluations and their proposed decisions;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Health Canada be approached to put a moratorium on the final decisions on these re-evaluations for at least 12 months in order to gain sufficient time to fulfill the data needs to make a Canada-valid decisions, and for adequate grower consultations on the potential impacts and development of mitigation strategies for these decisions on these active ingredients.

  • 2019-09 MRL Database as a National Resource

    2019-09                 MRL Database as a National Resource

    WHEREAS the OFVGA has been maintaining access to the MRL database and providing access to the database to CHC; andWHEREAS the MRL database has national benefits with respect to one of CHC’s priority files, crop protection; and

    WHEREAS CHC has limited resources and has not been able to make the MRL database subscription a priority in its budgeting;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA request CHC subscribe to the MRL database to ensure its benefits are truly paid for and received nationally; and

    FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that CHC be encouraged to support this additional budgetary cost by increasing its budget by the subscription amount and build the proportionate cost into future membership fee, so as to not unnecessarily strain CHC’s limited resources.

    Submitted by the Crop Protection Section 

  • 2019-10 Pesticide Classification in Ontario

    2019-10                 Pesticide Classification in Ontario

    WHEREAS having timely access to new crop protection tools is essential for the competitiveness of Ontario’s fruit and vegetable farmers; and

    WHEREAS pesticide classification in Ontario is more onerous than any other province, currently requiring an external committee to make recommendations on provincial classification; and

    WHEREAS the complexity of the classification system has resulted in unnecessary delays to product registration in Ontario compared to the rest of Canada; and

    WHEREAS federal classification provides the basis for pesticide classification in other provinces;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA request the Ontario government to streamline the classification process by eliminating classification by external committee; and

    FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that Ontario adopts the federal system as the basis for its classification and implements a reasonable service standard from the time of federal registration by Health Canada to Ontario registration.

    Submitted by the Crop Protection Section  

  • 2019-11 Balance Re-Evaluation Program at Health Canada for Sustainable Horticulture

    2019-11                 Balance Re-Evaluation Program at Health Canada for Sustainable Horticulture

    WHEREAS the current 15-year cyclical re-evaluation program at Health Canada is unsustainable for Canadian horticulture producers and the PMRA; and

    WHEREAS the primary mandate of the PMRA is to protect human health and the environment and not to materially consider economic or social benefits of registration in its decisions; and

    WHEREAS supporting Canadian data is often unavailable or inadequate to make the best possible science based decisions on risk assessments; and

    WHEREAS the number of re-evaluation decisions resulting in cancellation of active ingredients and uses has exceeded that of new registrations of active ingredients in recent years; and

    WHEREAS the future sustainability of Canadian food production is at risk as a result of the current re-evaluation program, contrary to the national interest in economic sustainability and food sovereignty;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA continue to work with CHC and the federal government to achieve sustainability in the re-evaluation program by requiring benefits assessment, including economic and societal impacts, and balancing in the decision process and to develop science based criteria for re-evaluation triggers as opposed to an arbitrary 15-year cycle; and

    FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA and CHC pursue expanded mandates of Health Canada’s federal partners to support the re-evaluation program including conducting agricultural impacts assessments and gathering relevant supporting data by AAFC and increasing environmental data monitoring by Environment and Climate Change Canada; and

    FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA and CHC request the federal government to allocate additional budget and resources to these federal organizations in support of the re-evaluation program.

    Submitted by the Crop Protection Section  



    Whereas Crop Protection is our top technology for growing fruits and vegetables in Canada, and

    Whereas, we are losing the use of these technologies faster than new ones are being registered,

    Therefore, be it resolved, that we work with the Registrar (PMRA), Registrants (Crop Life Canada), the Ministry of Agriculture, PMC, and Health Canada, to create a new process for the Re-evaluation of crop protection materials in Canada.

    Submitted by the East Central Ontario Fruit and Veg Growers   

  • 2019-18 Accessibility to Cost Effective Crop Products

    2019-18                 Accessibility to Cost Effective Crop Products 

    WHEREAS similar formulations of crop protection products can often be purchased in jurisdictions outside of Canada at a much lower cost. These formulations can be equally affective; and

    WHEREAS cost effective crop products continue to be on the increase;

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OFVGA lobby to ensure that growers have access to these products so growers can be more competitive.

    Submitted by Holland Marsh Growers Association

  • 2020-03 Encourage Development of Sector Level Crop Protection Use Data

    2020-03           Encourage Development of Sector Level Crop Protection

    Use Data


    Whereas re-evaluation decisions on crop protection products by PMRA are often limited by availability of reliable product use data; and


    Whereas reliable product use data will allow refinement of PMRA risk assessments and can result in maintaining access to products and uses that might otherwise be cancelled; and


    Whereas such data is already being generated in greater frequency than ever before as per food safety requirements and through record keeping programs such as FruitTracker, SprayHub, Ginseng Manager etc.


    Therefore, be it resolved that member commodity organizations be encouraged to explore methods of generating reliable and provincially representative summary data on crop protection use for their sector while maintaining the privacy of individual farms and businesses.


    WHEREAS unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) are significantly different than traditional aerial applications; and 


    WHEREAS UAVs can apply pesticides in a more directed mechanism than traditional aerial applications with less off target drift; and


    WHEREAS UAVs are more cost effective, environmentally friendly and reduce pesticide exposure to the operator and the environment; and


    WHEREAS the current number of aerial application labels for pesticides is small due to cost of amending labels; and


    WHEREAS UAV application allows for more intensive and directed spraying that would greatly benefit the fruit and vegetable industry.


    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that that the OFVGA work with CHC to engage the PMRA to work with crop protection companies to develop a pathway and mechanism for pesticide labels to be amended so that pesticides can be applied by UAV as a lower impact mode of application. 


    WHEREAS new invasive pest species are an increasingly regular occurrence in North American crop production; and 


    WHEREAS biological control is a preferred method of environmental sustainable and effective pest control and a viable alternative to chemical control that are susceptible to resistance; and


    WHEREAS CFIA and AAFC are responsible for evaluation, introduction and release of biological control vectors; and


    WHEREAS the industry has benefit within provincial areas where knowledge and extension is conducted; and


    WHEREAS training, education and knowledge within is conducted by provincial ministry and non-profit counterparts; and


    WHEREAS successful tech transfer involves biological control insect propagation and distribution companies to allow for accessibility of new insect control materials.


    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the OFVGA and CHC work with AAFC and CFIA to identify and facilitate an enhanced process involving stakeholders to consider the importation and use of biological control vectors.