Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) Standards Bulletin

June 10, 2015

The CGSB Technical Committee on Organic Agriculture has determined that a Standards Bulletin is needed to apply the following annotation for biodegradable mulch films as of June 10th, 2015 until the new version of the Canadian Organic Standard CAN/CGSB-32.311 Organic Production Systems — Permitted Substances Lists is published and comes into effect later in 2015.

The new annotation is consistent in principle with the current wording of CAN/CGSB-32.311; but contains an allowance for producers to access a temporary exception which permits the use of biodegradable mulch films that are on the market but do not meet the requirements for biobased sources.

The temporary exception was deemed necessary by the Technical Committee on Organic Agriculture due to the lack of consistency in the application of the standard since the last publication. It was approved at the May 11-13, 2015 meeting and shall be incorporated into the final standard to be published in 2015.

Biodegradable mulch films

100% of biodegradable mulch films shall be derived from biobased sources. Biodegradable polymers and Carbon Black from genetically engineered or petroleum sources are not permitted. Any other formulants or ingredients shall be listed in Tables 4.2 or 4.3 of CAN/CGSB-32.311. The following temporary exception is permitted: biodegradable mulch film products used on organic farms in 2014 but that do not meet the petroleum source requirement as indicated above may be used without removal until January 1, 2017.