Push for ‘Glyphosate-Free’ Causes Market Risks

August 4, 2023 | Source: The Western Producer | by Robert Arnason

Glyphosate is registered for pre-harvest weed control in many Canadian crops.

But with public and food industry attention on the herbicide, applying it to a crop in August is still a major market risk for farmers and Canada’s grain trade.

For instance, it can be sprayed on pulse crops to control weeds, because maximum residue limits (MRLs) for glyphosate are well-established in Canada’s major markets for pulse crops, said Greg Hartley, director, crop protection with Pulse Canada.

Unfortunately, it’s more complicated than an MRL.

“(In some markets), glyphosate MRLs are typically at a level that’s higher than the Canadian MRLs, right now. That being said… it’s still a marketing risk. Whether it’s due to consumer perception or market-driven factors, where it’s a buyer placing potential restrictions,” he said. “This is a big concern. We do see more companies pushing towards glyphosate-free.”

Bartley made the comments during an Aug. 1 webinar hosted by Keep It Clean — an initiative of the Canola Council of Canada, Pulse Canada, Cereals Canada and the Prairie Oat Growers Association.