b'The five priority diseases that thedue to triggering Canadas Plants withone collaboration has ended, and committee is currently focusing onNovel Traits (PNT) legislation, shethen a new collaboration is formed, are stem rust, leaf rust, stripe rust,said. and they bring over the genetics from common bunt and fusarium headAccording to Hubert, breeders andthe previous entity. All these lentil blight. These are considered to be theseed developers are still waiting forlines were bred through the CDC, but most important diseases facing wheatthat assurance. In May 2022, Healthbecame property of SPG, he said.in Western Canada at the moment. Canada published updated guidanceIt speaks to the fact, Hawkins However, the committee is facingconfirming that editing a plants DNAsays, that despite questions around a challenge in how to efficientlydoes not pose any additional risk,Canadas regulatory landscape, there assess candidates for suitability forand a safety assessment should onlyare still innovative things happening both western and national registra- be required if allergens are created,in the breeding sphere. Conventional tion.nutrient composition impacted, orbreeding isnt dead.This is particularly important if atheres a change in the food use ofNew breeding techniques like line is supported by another geo- the plant as a result of using the newgene editing are crucial, for sure, but graphical recommending committeebreeding technique.were not seeing them so much on and is seeking national registration.However, CFIAs anticipated policythe pulse side of it. Of course, DL The committee wants to ensure thatregarding the use of new breedingSeeds is a major player in the canola they have all the necessary informa- techniques has not been publishedbreeding game. With the sequencing tion to make an informed decisionyet, she noted.of canola genomes, its at the point and support what CFIA does as theFrom the 2019 commitment CFIAwhere the technology is useful, he registrar. gave us, were now three years pastsaid. Mark Forhan, senior officer ofthe timelines we were originallyTheres a bit less investment in the Plant Biosafety Office for thegiven. We need this guidance. Nothigh-level genomic research in pulses Canadian Food Inspection Agencyhaving it is hindering plant breedingcompared to some of the other crops (CFIA), spoke at this years plenaryinnovation in Canada, she said. that have a higher market share that session and addressed the intricaciesare more lucrative. But lets not forget associated with Canadas RegionalDont Count Conventional Breeding Outgenomics isnt a cheap endeavour. Restriction variety registration system.But just one area where innovationThe amount of investment thats Forhan said in his close to 20 yearsand progress is happening in spite ofrequired is big, and if we use faba with the CFIA, wheat has been thethe lack of gene editing is the pulsebean as an example of a crop thats only crop that has been registeredand specialty crops sector. garnering less than 100,000 acres in regionally. It was a record year for the PrairieCanada right now, theres not really The Seed Regulatory ModernizationRecommending Committee for Pulsesthe return on investment to warrant (SRM) process has discussed chal- and Special Crops (PRCPSC), with 39high resolution molecular tools in the lenges associated with regionallines under consideration made up ofbreeding game. restrictions, he said, but the ultimatefive fava bean lines, five dry bean, 13 solution is for the Eastern and Westernfield pea lines (including two marrow recommending committees involved infat peas which make the best mushy regionally-restricted variety decisionspeas but are also great for dips, to get together and to talk to eachsalads and even crunchy snacks), and other to make the process easier, anda whopping 16 lentil lines, some spe-float the possibility of shared checkcialty and some conventional. varieties in the case of disease resist- The big surge in numbers came ance testing.on the lentil side with the separa-tion of Saskatchewan Pulse Growers Facilitating Regulatory Change (SPG) from the Crop Development The theme of this years plenary ses- Centre (CDC) at the University of sion was the regulatory sphere.Saskatchewan. Last summer, SPG and Jennifer Hubert, executive directorLimagrain Field Seeds announced a of plant biotechnology for CropLifenew collaboration for pulse breeding Canada, addressed the need for firmin Saskatchewan.guidance from the Canadian FoodAs a result, Limagrain Field Seeds Inspection Agency on the matter ofbrought all the lentil genetics that new breeding techniques, specificallythey had access to the table this year, gene editing. Ultimately, breedersexplained Glen Hawkins, committee need a regulatory system that fosterschair and seed production manager/ For more coverage of this years PGDC meetinginnovation and allows them to usepulse breeder for DL Seeds. including a podcast episode with Marta Izydorczyk, new breeding techniques without fearThis is probably the first time inchair of the Prairie Recommending Committee for Oats that their product could be restrictedmy tenure here with PGDC whereand Barleyvisit germination.ca/pgdc20236GERMINATION.CAMARCH 2023'