GFM Network News


Second Seeds Canada merger vote to proceed sans CSGA

Seed Growers membership had voted against amalgamation deal

A proposal to combine Canada’s seed industry groups into a single organization, to be dubbed Seeds Canada, will be subject to a new vote, this time with one less group on board. The Canadian Seed Trade Association (CSTA), Canadian Plant Technology Agency (CPTA); Commercial Seed Analysts Association of Canada (CSAAC) and Canadian Seed Institute announced […] Read more

CSTA welcomes its 66th president

Dan Wright, of Monsanto Canada, has been named the 66th President of the Canadian Seed Trade Association, the association says in a release. Wright has been involved with the CSTA for a number of years. In that time, he has served on the board of directors for two years and on the executive for three […] Read more


Coexistence plan for GM alfalfa won’t eliminate risk

Expert says stopping the spread of the glyphosate-tolerant trait is virtually impossible, but levels can be kept ‘very, very low’

The recently released “coexistence plan” for genetically modified alfalfa in Western Canada doesn’t offer any guarantees that conventional and organic crops won’t be contaminated, says an expert on gene transfer. “It really depends on what you’re trying to achieve,” said Rene Van Acker, a professor of plant science at the University of Guelph. “If it’s […] Read more

The planned release of a GM variety of alfalfa for commercial hay production in Eastern Canada has raised fears of contamination 
in conventional alfalfa.

Roundup Ready alfalfa primed for launch in East

But critics of GM alfalfa say U.S. experience shows that ‘coexistence’ isn’t possible

Roundup Ready alfalfa is being launched on a limited basis in Canada’s six eastern provinces. Forage Genetics International (FGI) said late last month it will be releasing some HarvXtra alfalfa seed for planting this spring — but critics of GM alfalfa denounced the move, saying it’s “a myth” it won’t contaminate non-GM seed and hay […] Read more


Alberta is the largest producer of alfalfa seed, but growers’ overseas customers have a 
zero-GM tolerance policy.

GM alfalfa may already be in Alberta

Accidental contamination of foundation seed heightens fears that forage 
and hay markets worth hundreds of millions are in peril

Genetically modified alfalfa has somehow made its way into Alberta — raising fears that western Canadian forage seed growers and hay exporters could be shut out of markets worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Alberta Farmer recently learned that a batch of foundation seed contaminated with Roundup Ready alfalfa was sent to a forage seed […] Read more

New Plant Breeders’ Rights database launched

A new database to assist seed sector stakeholders to easily identify Plant Breeders’ Rights (PBR) protection on crop varieties registered for sale in Canada has been launched. The Crop Varieties Registered in Canada and Plant Breeders’ Rights Status database was created by the Canadian Seed Trade Association with the assistance of the Canadian Food Inspection […] Read more


Scott Horner

Scott Horner new CSTA president

Scott Horner of HyTech Production in Lethbridge is the new president of the Canadian Seed Trade Association. Horner has been a member of the group’s board since 2008, and represents it on the Seed Association of the Americas. He has also chaired the hybrid canola seed production subcommittee. He succeeds Peter Entz. The Canadian Seed Trade Association […] Read more

This poster on bee health is one of several on offer at the Bees Matter website.

Ag groups launch bee initiative

Bees Matter is offering free seeds for pollinator-friendly gardens — and information on bees

A new program called Buzzing Gardens is offering Canadians free seeds to plant pollinator-friendly gardens. The program is an initiative of Bees Matter, a group consisting of chemical and agricultural groups including CropLife Canada, Bayer CropScience, Syngenta, the Canola Council of Canada, the Canadian Seed Trade Association, and the Canadian Honey Council. “The agricultural community […] Read more


Free guide available on dealing with treated seed

Guide offers stewardship practices on how to handle, store, transport and use treated seed

A new Guide to Treated Seed Stewardship provides a one-stop resource for those involved with handling, storage, transportation, and use of treated seed. Developed by a group of seed industry professionals, the guide offers best management practices for insecticide- and fungicide-treated seed. It is designed to complement CropLife Canada’s seed treatment operations standards, which provide uniform […] Read more

Twelve new crop varieties under PBR91

Wheat, oats, flax and potato varieties added

The Canadian Seed Trade Association says the Plant Breeders’ Rights Office (PBRO) has granted rights under the new legislation (PBR91) to 12 new crop varieties. The April 30 PBRO Plant Varieties Journal on the CFIA website lists three new PBR91 wheat varieties, two oats varieties, one flax variety and six potato varieties. CSTA says there […] Read more