Canadian pulse exports to India have been given the green light, at least for the short term, temporarily heading off fears of higher fumigation charges or being shut out of the country completely.
 
The federal government announced Wednesday that India has granted another exemption to allow Canadian pulse exporters to access that market.
 
Exports leaving Canada on or before Sept. 30 will not require fumigation in Canada and exporters will not incur a penalty at Indian ports.
 
An announcement out of India on June 29 had sparked concerns over possible added fees Canadian exporters might incur. The announcement said pulses that were shipped under the exemption but not fumigated would be charged five times the usual fee for fumigation at Indian ports.
 
“India had last week issued another exemption for another kind of category for fumigation of methyl bromide for pulses entering the country, which did outline that if they want to import pulses with that exception, it would cost; there’d be certain fees associated with it,” said Oliver Anderson, a communications advisor at Agriculture and Agri-food Canada.
 
The situation has since been clarified and Canadian pulse exporters will be charged no fumigation fees, Anderson said. “This is without fees.”
 
India requires methyl bromide fumigation to guard against nematode pests from gaining a foothold in the country.
 
Canada is trying to phase out the use of methyl bromide because it is classified as an ozone-depleting substance and the treatment prescribed doesn’t work in cold temperatures.
 
As well, the nemotode pests India is concerned about don’t exist here and other pests are controlled by Canada’s cold weather, so no fumigation is necessary.
 
The federal government, in a release Wednesday, said Canada continues to work toward a long-term solution.
 
India buys about a third of Canadian peas and lentils, worth about $1.1 billion last year.