The federal government says it’s looking at new restrictions on the growing of genetically modified crops in Canada.
The Food and Drugs Administration says it plans to ban the cultivation of GM corn, soybeans, cotton, alfalfa and other crops under the new regulations, which come into effect on Jan. 1.
The federal government is proposing a minimum of 50,000 hectares of GM crops a year for the next three years and a maximum of 40,000 for the rest of the year.
In a statement released Wednesday, Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz said the regulations will ensure that farmers are able to produce the food that Canadians want.
Ritz says the rules will help farmers to manage the risks of GM technology, and encourage investment in research, development and testing.
The federal agency said the rules are designed to help farmers and their employees keep their businesses in control.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said the agency will also be conducting a review of the risks associated with GM crops.
The regulations will apply to crops that have been approved for cultivation by a federal regulatory agency, such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Canadian Food Standards Agency, the National Farmers Union or the Agricultural Marketing Board.
The new rules apply to seeds and seeds products.