Regulatory Directive DIR2011-02, Update on the Status of the Revisions to the Residue Chemistry Crop Groups

Pest Management Regulatory Agency
11 October 2011
ISSN: 1498-5926 (PDF version)
Catalogue number: H113-3/2011-2E (PDF version)

1.0 Purpose

The purpose of this document is to provide an update to industry and other interested parties on the status of the revisions to the residue chemistry crop grouping scheme used by the Health Canada Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA). Two previous Regulatory Directives (DIR2009-01, Revisions to Residue Chemistry Crop Groups and DIR2010-01, Update on the Status of the Revisions to the Residue Chemistry Crop Groups) have been published which provided information on the revisions to seven existing crop groups, the creation of a new crop group and the addition of a new oilseed crop to Crop Group 20. These new and revised crop groups have replaced those listed in Section 15 of Regulatory Directive DIR98-02, Residue Chemistry Guidelines.

This current Regulatory Directive is the third in a series of planned crop group updates expected during the next several years and provides information on the revisions to Crop Group 14 – Tree Nuts. The PMRA will adopt and implement the crop groups as they are revised.

2.0 Background

Crop groupings allow maximum residue limits (MRLs) to be established for multiple related crops based on data from a representative set of crops. The crop grouping concept leads to an estimate of the maximum residue level that could occur on any crop within the group. Crop groups enable the registration expansion and establishment of MRLs for groups of similar crops based on residue data from certain representative commodities. The crop groups listed in Regulatory Directive DIR98‑02 were based on revisions made in 1995.

As a result of the 2002 United States Department of Agriculture / Interregional Research Project No. 4 (IR-4) International Crop Grouping Symposium, the International Crop Grouping Consulting Committee (ICGCC) was established to a) update the crop groups to incorporate more than 500 "orphan crops" that were not members of an existing crop group, and b) develop new crop groups to more easily harmonize crop groups and simplify the commodity terminology for establishing MRLs.

In co-operation with the  United States Environmental Protection Agency and the ICGCC, the PMRA is revising and updating the 20 crop groups as listed in Section 15 of Regulatory Directive DIR98-02. The PMRA expects these revisions to promote more extensive use of crop groupings for MRL setting purposes and, in particular, facilitate the availability of pesticides for minor crop uses.

To date, the PMRA has approved revisions to seven of the existing crop groups. Under Regulatory Directives DIR2009-01 and DIR2010-01, the following crop groups were revised:

A new crop group, Crop Group 21, Edible Fungi Group was also created and Calendula, a new oilseed crop was added to Crop Group 20. These revisions expand the existing crop groups by adding new commodities, establishing new crop subgroups and revising the representative crops in some groups.

On-going work on the revisions to the crop groups has resulted in the approval of revisions to an additional crop group, specifically Crop Group 14 – Tree Nuts which is being communicated to stakeholders through the publication of the current Directive.

3.0 Naming Convention for Revised Crop Groups

In order to create a clear distinction between existing and revised crop groups, a standardized naming format has been adopted for identifying revised crop groups. The revised crop groups will retain the same (or similar) name and number as the original crop group, except that the number will be followed by a hyphen and the final two digits of the year it was approved by the PMRA. For example, the original fruiting vegetables crop group is identified as "Crop Group 8: Fruiting Vegetables (Except Cucurbits) Group". The revised crop group is identified as "Crop Group 8-09: Fruiting Vegetables Group" as it was approved in 2009.

4.0 Revised Crop Groups Identified in this Regulatory Directive

4.1 Crop Group 14-11 Tree Nuts

  • The original Crop Group 14, Tree Nuts has been modified and will be renamed Crop Group 14-11, Tree Nuts Group.
  • The revised crop group has been expanded from the existing 12 commodities to 39 commodities.
  • The representative commodities for the crop group will remain as almonds and pecans.
  • There are no related subgroups associated with this crop group.

5.0 Table of Original and Revised Residue Chemistry Crop Groups

The revisions to the residue chemistry crop groups is an ongoing project which is expected to take a number of years to complete. To track the progress of the revisions, the PMRA has prepared a Residue Chemistry Crop Group spreadsheet, which lists the original crop groups as per Regulatory Directive DIR98-02, as well as the revised crop groups (where applicable). This spreadsheet will be updated to reflect revisions to the crop groups when they are accepted and adopted by the PMRA as part of the work of the ICGCC.

Notification of future revisions to the remaining residue chemistry crop groups will be published on a regular basis with a link to the Residue Chemistry Crop Group spreadsheet.

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