The United Nations FAO Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA) requested member states (including Canada) to prepare a Country Report leading towards the Third Report on the State of the World’s Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (PGRFA).
This “stock-taking” exercise will help Canada to understand the current situation of PGRFA in Canada and to make strategic decisions. Canada’s country report underlines its commitment to the objectives of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) that Canada ratified in 2002, as well as the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), ratified in 1992, both relating to the conservation, to their sustainable use and to the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of PGRFA.
The Country Report describes the status of PGRFA in Canada by addressing each of the 18 Priority Actives defined by the Global Plan of Action for PGRFA of the CGRFA. The report has four chapters: Chapter 1 “In situ conservation” describes the status of PGRFA in natural and agricultural landscapes as well those managed by Indigenous People. Chapter 2 “Ex situ conservation”describes the role of the three genebanks managed by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC): Plant Gene Resources of Canada, PGRC, (seed germplasm), Canadian Clonal Genebank, CCGB, (fruit germplasm), and Canadian Potato Gene Resources, CPGR, (potato germplasm); as well as the role of botanical gardens and arboreta. Chapter 3 “Sustainable use of PGRFA” describes the roles of the public and private plant breeding sectors as well as Civil Society organizations, research and regulatory agencies of the Canadian seed sector. Chapter 4 “Building sustainable national and international networks” describes programs and networks that work with PGRFA.
For preparation of this country report many stakeholders were contacted and provided input. Some of the key players include:
- Federally or provincially supported government plant breeding and genetic resources programs
- Indigenous Peoples, agriculture and horticultural producers and researchers
- Private sector breeding programs
- Civil Society Organizations
- Universities with agricultural, horticultural or plant breeding programs
- Botanical gardens and Arboreta
This country report has two major purposes:
- To provide the reader with an overview of the current status of PGRFA in Canada and to indicate where action on the national level may be required; and
- to contribute to the CGRFA’s preparation of the Third Report on the State of the World’s PGRFA leading to the development of a Third Global Plan of Action (GPA) for PGRFA.