As published in 2007, peaches and nectarines are grown on approximately 3200 hectares (7900 acres) in Canada, with 91% of the cultivated land devoted to peach production and 9% to nectarine production. Ontario leads in both peach and nectarine production with 82% of the national production, followed by British Columbia at 18%. Total national production stands at 27 733 tonnes ( British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture and Land, OMAFRA, Statistics Canada 2006 and 2007).
Health Canada (HC) and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's (AAFC) Pesticide Risk Reduction Program identified peaches and nectarines as priority crops. General peach and nectarine production information and issues along with pest issues are documented in the Crop Profile for Peach in Canada. A peach and nectarine issues document, extracted from the crop profile, was used as a discussion tool in peach and nectarine stakeholder meetings and consultations to help identify the top insect, disease and weed issues. General issues of concern and potential solutions to these issues are also discussed at these meetings. AAC's Pest Management Centre prepared both documents in consultation with the peach and nectarine industries, the Pesticide Risk Reduction Program's Technical Working Group and the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA).
Provincial teleconferences were held with peach and nectarine stakeholders in Nova Scotia (February 17, 2006), Ontario (February 14, 2006) and British Columbia (March 16, 2006) to prioritize issues, identify possible solutions and propose members for a national steering committee. Participants included growers, provincial specialists, researchers and federal government representatives (Pest Management Centre and PMRA).
The national steering committee is comprised of peach/nectarine scientists, provincial specialists, a Pest Management Centre representative and a PMRA representative. The steering committees identified bacterial diseases (bacterial canker and bacterial spot), peach leaf curl, plant bug complex and aphids as their top priority issues (October 13, 2006). Peach and nectarine stakeholders are also contributing to the Organophosphate Replacement Working Group along side pome fruit stakeholders.
A project has been funded under the Pesticide Risk Reduction Program for the biological control of peach leaf curl.
For further updates, please visit Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.