Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, International Trade Minister Ed Fast, and Minister of Natural Resources as well as Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario Greg Rickford announced that wood exports are expected to increase after Mexico agreed to recognize Canada’s heat treated lumber certification program.
Under this new arrangement with Mexico, Canadian lumber producers accredited under a heat treatment program overseen by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) are now able to export wood such as spruce, pine and fir to Mexico without a phytosanitary certificate.
The trade and movement of lumber and wood products are often a pathway for the spread of plant pests. In Canada, lumber is heat-treated to reduce this risk and to meet the import requirements of foreign countries. The heat treatment process is defined in the Canadian Heat-Treated Wood Products Certification Program. This program’s certificates are recognized by many of Canada’s trading partners including the United States, the European Union, Australia, Korea and now Mexico.
The agreement between the CFIA, Natural Resources Canada, and Mexico‘s environment and natural resources ministry comes as a result of discussions under the North American Plant Protection Organization Cooperative Agreement which encourages cooperation in facilitating safe trade of plants and plant products between the United States, Mexico and Canada.