Statement by the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay on the Government of Canada's support for the International Year of Plant Health (2020)

Statement

December 20, 2018 – Ottawa, Ontario

The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, today issued the following statement in support of the United Nations' proclamation of the International Year of Plant Health in 2020.

"The federal government recognizes that protecting Canada's plant resources is vital to food security and the wellbeing of Canadians. Plants are not only the first link in the food chain, they are critical to Canada's economy. The national crop industry generates over $22 billion in exports alone.

While we work hard to maintain the highest level of plant health and food safety in Canada, the spread of pests and diseases – especially through global trade and travel – presents serious risks to agriculture and to our environment.

I am honoured to announce the Government of Canada's support of the adoption of the United Nations' resolution on the International Year of Plant Health in 2020.

The Canada Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is the National Plant Protection Organization for Canada, and is committed to protecting plant resources. Alongside other federal departments, the CFIA is leading Canada's efforts with other international partners in raising awareness about the damaging effects of plant pests and disease, and to helping to gather support in strengthening international plant health protection.

Today's announcement represents a key step towards bolstering national, regional and international plant health organizations so they can help address the challenges related to the protection of plant resources, both here in Canada, and in developing and least developed countries around the world.

I look forward to working with my colleagues to further our work in safeguarding our plant resources, environment and the economy, and ensuring that Canadians enjoy the high quality of life that they have come to expect."

Contacts

Katie Hawkins
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay
613-773-1059
katie.hawkins@canada.ca

CFIA Media Relations
613-773-6600
cfia.mediarequest-requetesmedias.acia@canada.ca

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