An advisory group picked from the private and public sectors of Canada's potato industry has been set up to develop a new voluntary, nationwide farm-level biosecurity standard.
The group, set up by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency working with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the Canadian Horticultural Council's potato committee executive, other potato organizations and provincial departments of agriculture, has already agreed to specific terms of reference for the standard such as roles and responsibilities, time frames and process.
The standard, which is expected to complement existing farm-level programs, is to be developed over about two years, CFIA said in a release Friday.
"Biosecurity," for the purposes of this project, means "activities that minimize the risk of introducing and spreading disease and pests," CFIA said.
Once complete, use of the standard will be voluntary, CFIA emphasized. Potato growers can then use the standard to design a new program or improve on disease and pest control programs they already have in place.