China Trade UpdateApril 10, 2019Hub ArticleA resumption of canola seed trade to China is a top priority for Canadian Canola Growers Association (CCGA). We are actively communicating farmers' concerns and working with the Canola Council of Canada (CCC) to advocate for a science-based resolution. During the first 10 days of April, representatives of CCGA were in Ottawa to express these concerns to Government and to discuss measures to assist farmers in managing the uncertainty. Several important steps have been taken, including: Monday, April 1The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Marie-Claude Bibeau, announced the formation of a canola working group to resolve market access concerns related to trade with China. Representation on the working group includes CCGA, CCC, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Richardson International, Viterra, and representatives of the federal, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan governments. The group held its first meeting on April 4. Read the news release about the working group.Minister Bibeau indicated that Canada has sent an official letter to China requesting that a Canadian delegation of plant and technical experts travel there to meet with their Chinese counterparts. Tuesday, April 2CCGA CEO, Rick White, and CCC President, Jim Everson, appeared at the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food to discuss canola trade with China. White expressed farmers' concerns with crop in-bin and cash flow, and described the uncertainty cast over the 2019 production season. He provided recommendations that could help farmers during this period of uncertainty, including:enhancements to the Advance Payments Program that could lessen worries about cash flow;adjustments to existing BRM programs including Agri-Stability and Agri-Invest;opportunities to diversify markets for canola seed, both export and domestic. Listen to the appearance here.Minister Bibeau and Minister of International Trade Diversification, Jim Carr appeared at the Standing Committee on International Trade to talk about what the Government of Canada is doing in regard to market access issues for canola being exported to China. Watch their appearance here. Thursday, April 4CCGA CEO, Rick White, was interviewed by BNN Bloomberg (see photo above). Watch the video: Growers seek scientific proof of China's claims of canola pest infection. Tuesday, April 9CCGA President, Bernie McClean, and CEO, Rick White, appeared as witnesses at the Standing Committee on International Trade. As a farmer, McClean described how the purchase of inputs for this year's crop, along with canola that remains in storage from last year, puts a strain on cash flow for small farm businesses. Listen to the appearance here.For more background information on this issue, read the April 1 CCGA Hub Article: Bringing the Farmer Voice Forward on China.