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Canadian Grain Commission Implementing CUSMA-Related Changes

Posted July 05, 2020

Changes to the Canadian grain system as a result of the new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement, which came into effect on July 1, have been implemented Canadian Grain Commission effective as of that date.
Canada-US Flags against backdrop of wheat and USMCA

These changes will enable certain varieties of grain produced in the United States to receive an official Canadian grade. The applicable grading applies only to varieties that are registered in Canada.

“The Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement marks an important milestone in our trade relationship with the U.S. and Mexico,” said Patti Miller, Chief Commissioner of the Canadian Grain Commission in a statement. “Delivery declarations will protect Canada’s quality assurance system while allowing American grain producers to receive an official grade.”



U.S. administrations of both political parties have long complained about the discriminatory treatment of American-grown wheat, particularly as it relates to statutory grading.

Previously, the Canada Grain Act excluded any type of imported grain from receiving statutory Canadian grades based on origin. This meant that US-grown grain delivered to a primary elevator in Canada could not receive an official Canadian grade, even if the grain was of a variety that is registered in Canada.

The U.S. Trade Representative has routinely included this practice among the trade barriers facing U.S. exporters cited in its annual Special 301 Report. These changes are intended to address those legitimate concerns while preserving the integrity of the Canadian grain quality assurance system.


What Changes are Being Made?

In addition to grain grown in the U.S. now being able to receive an official Canadian grade (provided it’s a variety that is registered in Canada) the following changes have been made to the Canada Grain Act and Canada Grain Regulations:

  • The country of origin statement formerly required on inspection certificates for US-grown grain will be removed; and
  • It will be mandatory for people, including licensed grain companies, who sell grain to a Canadian Grain Commission licensee to complete a declaration of eligibility.


  1. American producers who deliver grain to Canada are cautioned that they will have all the same compliance obligations as Canadian producers. The declarations requirement will help accommodate U.S. grain by ensuring reliable information on seed registration is provided.
  2. In Western Canada, delivery declarations must be in place for the beginning of the 2020-2021 crop year on August 1, 2020. Because delivery declarations have not previously been in use in Eastern Canada, the Canadian Grain Commission says it will work with grain sector stakeholders to phase in the declaration during the 2020-2021 crop year.


Need More Information?

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Should you have any questions about these changes to the Canada Grain Act and Canada Grain Regulations, or other CUSMA/USMCA implementation issues, don’t hesitate to contact one of our knowledgeable trade experts. 


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