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South Korea resuming Canadian wheat imports after concern over GMO wheat discovery in Alberta: industry group

File photo of a stalk of winter wheat in Toulon, Kan. taken in May 2018. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

The Alberta Wheat Commission says South Korea has resumed imports of Canadian wheat after suspending trade last week due to concerns about a small number of genetically modified plants.

Earlier this month the Canadian Food Inspection Agency announced a few GM wheat plants were found near a farm in southern Alberta.

READ MORE: CFIA issues statement on discovery of genetically modified, herbicide-tolerant wheat in southern Alberta

Genetically modified wheat is not allowed to be grown commercially anywhere in Canada.

The commission says rigorous tests proved there is no evidence of GM wheat in commercial shipments.

Japan, a major buyer of Canadian wheat, also suspended imports due to the same concerns.

The commission says it is confident that Japan will soon follow suit and resume imports.

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“This resolution is a critical step forward in providing assurance to Canadian wheat customers that Canada does not produce or ship genetically modified wheat,” commission chairman Kevin Bender said in a release Tuesday.

Watch below: Japan and South Korea banned wheat imports from Canada after genetically modified wheat was found in an Alberta field. On June 21, 2018, Wendy Winiewski spoke to an expert about how the wheat may have gotten there.

Click to play video: 'Your Agriculture: how did GMO wheat end up in an Alberta field?' Your Agriculture: how did GMO wheat end up in an Alberta field?
Your Agriculture: how did GMO wheat end up in an Alberta field? – Jun 21, 2018

The federal government has said it is standard protocol in both South Korea and Japan to temporarily close markets in such cases.

Japan imports around 1.5 million tonnes a year of Canadian wheat and tends to buy the highest-quality grain at premium prices.

South Korea imports around 235,000 tonnes a year.

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READ MORE: South Korea also stops importing Canadian wheat after GMO plants found

Watch below: On June 18, 2018, Albert Delitala filed this report about Japan halting the import of Canadian wheat after genetically modified wheat was discovered in southern Alberta.

Click to play video: 'Discovery of genetically modified wheat in Alberta prompts Japan to halt imports' Discovery of genetically modified wheat in Alberta prompts Japan to halt imports
Discovery of genetically modified wheat in Alberta prompts Japan to halt imports – Jun 15, 2018

In 2013, several Asian countries temporarily banned U.S. wheat imports after genetically modified wheat was found unexpectedly in a field on an Oregon farm.

The wheat found in Alberta was not a genetic match to plants involved in any U.S. cases, the CFIA has said.

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