Five steps to market-ready canola

International buyers are testing like never before — but meeting their standards is easy

Market-ready canola is just five simple steps away, says Brian Innes of the Canola Council of Canada.
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Growing a good canola crop isn’t just about high yield or quality — it’s also about getting that crop ready to market on a global scale.

“We export about 90 per cent of what we produce in Canada, so being able to meet the requirements of our export customers is really important for having open and stable markets to sell our canola to,” said Brian Innes, vice-president of government relations for the Canola Council of Canada.

“These are things like pesticide residues, blackleg, incidents of deregistered varieties, as well as improper canola storage.”

In order to make sure their canola stays market-ready, producers should follow these five simple tips, said Innes, who spoke at canolaPALOOZA in late June.

First, use pesticides at the correct rate, timing, and pre-harvest interval. Next, stay away from unregistered pesticides or chemicals that leave unacceptable levels of residues under internationally recognized maximum residue limits.

“There are some pest control products that processors and exporters have identified as a concern,” said Innes.

“We need to help growers understand how to select a product that’s approved for use by talking to their grain buyer, and then using it according to the label.”

These include anything with the active ingredients quinclorac (Accord, Facet, Clever, or Masterline); fluazifop-p-butyl (Venture L or Fusion); and vinclozolin (Ronilan). Some exporters will also reject canola treated with metconazole, the active ingredient in Quash.

“Producers should talk to their grain buyers if they have questions or concerns about products that they’re using.”

Third, producers should follow best management practices for storing canola, said Innes.

“Use the right storage practices to keep canola in the condition that it needs to be in for export by not using things like malathion and by keeping animal proteins out of the bins,” he said.

Producers should also grow blackleg-resistant varieties and use blackleg management practices, such as planting treated seed, scouting fields for symptoms, applying a fungicide, and maintaining a break between canola crops in the rotation.

“Producers need to be making sure they use the right blackleg practices to prevent high levels of infection.”

And finally, producers should avoid growing deregistered varieties: Roundup Ready Polish (Hysyn 101RR), Bromoxynil Tolerant (295BX, Armor BX, Cartier BX, Zodiac BX, Renegade BX), and older Liberty Link varieties (Exceed, 2631 LL, Swallow, SW Legion LL, SW Flare LL, LBD 2393 LL, Innovator, Independence, HCN 14, Phoenix, 3850, 2153, 3640, 3880, 2163, 2273).

“Having growers understand what they need to do to meet the requirements of our customers helps everybody get a higher value for their canola and keeps our markets more stable,” said Innes.

About the author


Jennifer Blair

Jennifer Blair is a Red Deer-based reporter with a post-secondary education in professional writing and nearly 10 years of experience in corporate communications, policy development, and journalism. She's spent half of her career telling stories about an industry she loves for an audience she admires--the farmers who work every day to build a better agriculture industry in Alberta.



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