- ‘We expect it’s days away, not weeks away.’
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) signaled a release that table potatoes from P.E.I. could be let into the U.S. shortly.
P.E.I. farmers are delighted to hear the prohibition on potato exports to the U.S. mainland looks to be eventually coming to an end. However, farmers are always waiting for facts regarding what that trade resumption will entail.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) signaled a release that table potatoes from P.E.I. would be permitted into the U.S. soon.
The report is welcome news for growers who haven’t been able to send their products south of the border since the Canadian Food Inspection Agency halted exports back in November.
“[It’s] wonderful news to hear,” said Jason Webster of M.W.M. Farms in Kinkora. “We’re all going to wait and see here when the real first bag of potatoes gets over the border. We expect it’s days away, not weeks away.”
Webster said he expects to hear the complete details on when trade can continue soon so growers can plan for the spring planting season with “a little bit of faith.”
During an interview with C.B.C. News: Compass, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau said she’d talked with her U.S. counterpart Tom Vilsack on Thursday, and he said the borders could reopen “in a matter of days.”
But some essential details haven’t been revealed yet. APHIS said in the release trade may resume under “specified conditions” that contain potato warts from being introduced into the U.S.
Bibeau said the U.S. new conditions might be “more clear” regarding where the potatoes come from. “We expect to hear from them in the following few days,” Webster said.
Source – cbc.ca