High oleic canola has been produced in Western Canada for a number of years. It will soon be competing with high oleic soybeans. High oleic oils eliminate the need for hydrogenation resulting in foods with negligible amounts of trans fats. High oleic canola varieties account for a significant percentage of the canola grown on the Prairies. Now, Pioneer Hi-Bred, a DuPont business, has announced that its high oleic soybean trait has been approved by Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Canada and Mexico are the first countries to complete regulatory reviews. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration completed its review of high oleic soybeans earlier this year, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture is still in the process of reviewing the trait. Pioneer says varieties with the trait will be field tested in the U.S. and Canada this growing season with potential Canadian registration of the first products in 2010. There’s only a limited acreage of soybeans in Saskatchewan, but there are quite a few acres in Manitoba and lots in Ontario. Of course, soybeans are huge in the U.S. Across North America they’re grown on more acres than any other oilseed crop. Development work will need to continue with canola so that it can continue to stay ahead of this major competitor. I’m Kevin Hursh.
Kevin Hursh, PAg, CAC