U.S. export ban on P.E.I. potatoes expanded following discovery of wart fungus

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has suspended the movement of all fresh potatoes from P.E.I. to the United States, following the discovery of potato wart on two different Island farms in October.

Seed potato exports were suspended on Nov. 2. In a news release issued early Monday morning, CFIA announced the expanded ban.

Potato wart disfigures potatoes and reduces yield, but is not a threat to human health. The ban does not include potatoes that have already been processed, such as frozen french fries.

CFIA took the action after the U.S. notified Canada it would act if Canada did not take voluntary measures.

The government of Canada is working on a plan to support farmers affected by the closure of the U.S. market, the news release said.

Potato wart was first discovered on P.E.I. in 2000, and has since been found 33 fields, including farms in all three counties.

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Author: Shirley