Glyphosate Residue Limits Increase Delayed

Updated: Sep 2, 2021

On August 4, 2021 the Government of Canada put a pause on proposed increases to Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs), including for glyphosate (for example, Roundup). As a result, there will be no increases to MRLs until at least spring 2022. Health Canada’s proposal was to increase Canadian MRLs to be aligned with international standards to allow trade to flow freely from one country to the next. The consultation on glyphosate, proposed MRL and the subsequent pause on the consultation has brought glyphosate into the news along with the Bloc Quebecois promising to implement programs to remove it from use in Quebec. Some OMSPA members have expressed concerns about glyphosate affecting their bushes through damage by spray drift and potential contamination of sap through up take from the soil. These are two separate issues. On the issue of overspray - if you suspect there has been overspray, even before symptoms appear, you should read this article and contact the Ministry of the Environment Conservation and Parks as soon as possible at 1-866-663-8477. If off-label use is proven, the person spraying may be liable for damage that occurs. On the issue of glyphosate contamination – we are not aware of any research showing the possibility of contamination of sap by glyphosate. Sap contamination by glyphosate is an unlikely event because glyphosate is considered non-persistent in plants, soils, water and sediments. In soils and sediments, low residue levels may be detected for up to a year following treatment; however, such residues are considered to be strongly bound, biologically unavailable and not of toxicological significance. Glyphosate applications to dry down some field crops do not occur later than October. Therefore, by the time sapflow begins, it is highly unlikely that there will be any glyphosate residue left that could make its way into maple sap. OMSPA’s Research, Technology and Transfer Committee is looking into the issue. Further information can be found here: Government of Canada pauses decision on Glyphosate as it strengthens the capacity and transparency of review process for pesticides (newswire.ca) Consultation on Glyphosate, Proposed Maximum Residue Limit PMRL2021-10 - Canada.ca


John Williams

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