OTTAWA, ONTARIO, CANADA — Canadian officials introduced on Dec. 9 the Modernization of Canada’s Grain Industry Act that would build on major reforms made in 2012 by enhancing producer protections and improving grain quality and safety assurance.

The amendments would allow the Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) to establish a producer compensation fund to protect producers in the event that a licensee fails to pay for grain deliveries. Producer access to binding determination of grade and dockage for their deliveries of grain will be extended to include process elevators, grain dealers and container loading facilities. A new class of license will be created for container loading facilities, which will also be brought under producer payment protection programs.

Changes aim to make the monitoring of grain safety more consistent across the country, establish a non-binding decision review mechanism to evaluate certain Commission decisions, and allow for more effective enforcement of violations under the Canada Grain Act, Canada Grain Regulations and orders issued by the Canadian Grain Commission. The Government will undertake consultations with stakeholders, including provinces, in advance of implementation.

The bill also updates the CGC's mandate clarifying that it acts in the public interest.

Amendments were made to the Canada Grain Act in October 2012 as part of the Jobs and Growth Act that streamlined the operations of the CGC and reduced costs to the grain sector.

These changes are part of the government's ongoing reform of the grain sector, which includes regulatory modernization, investments in science and research and an aggressive trade and market access agenda. Other grain sector reforms were included in the Marketing Freedom for Grain Farmers Act in 2011 and the Fair Rail for Grain Farmers Act this year.