Canada: Canadian International Trade Tribunal Continues Anti-Dumping Order After 21 Years Of Protection

Last Updated: September 28 2005

Originally published in Blakes Bulletin on International Trade - September 2005

Article by Maria Morellato and Angela D’Elia, ©2005, Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP


On September 12, 2005, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (Tribunal) released its statement of reasons continuing, with amendment, an anti-dumping order concerning whole potatoes imported from the United States (U.S.) for use or consumption in British Columbia (B.C.). With the amendment, the Tribunal excluded from its order certain potato types and pack sizes.

The decision concerned the expiry review of a Tribunal order that was initially made in June of 1984, and that has continued, with some modification, since that time. The order imposed dumping duties on certain varieties of potatoes being imported from the U.S. into B.C. at prices that had been injurious to the B.C. potato industry. On September 12 of this year, the Tribunal decided that, after 21 years of anti-dumping protection, the B.C. potato sector was still at risk of being injured by low-priced U.S. potato imports.

An expiry review is a two-stage process that occurs once very five years. First, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) conducts an investigation to determine whether the expiry of the order is likely to result in the continuation or resumption of dumping of the subject goods. On April 14, 2005, the CBSA determined that the expiry of the current order was likely to result in the continuation or resumption of dumping of potatoes by the U.S. into B.C. During the second stage, the Tribunal conducts its own review of the order to determine whether its expiry is likely to cause injury to the domestic industry. In continuing the order, the Tribunal in this case concluded that "the rescission of its order will likely result in injury to the growers of all or almost all of the potato production in British Columbia."

The principal parties involved in the review were the B.C. Vegetable Marketing Commission (BCVMC), representing the B.C. potato industry, and the Washington State Potato Commission (WSPC). Washington is the most important exporter of potatoes to B.C., accounting for approximately 80% of the total imports coming into that province from the U.S.

The Decision

1. Injury Analysis

The factors that the Tribunal will consider during an injury analysis are aimed at helping the Tribunal determine to what extent the domestic industry, in this case the B.C. potato industry, will be adversely affected, or injured, if the order is not continued. Injury to the industry may take a number of forms, including significant increases in dumped imports, significant price undercutting or price depression. The Tribunal will also consider the relative impacts of the imports on output, sales, market share, profits, capacity utilization, inventories and employment.

In this case, the Tribunal focused on the following factors:

Changes in the U.S. and B.C. Markets Since the Last Review

Principal among the changes since the last review was the formation of potato grower co-operatives in the U.S., the stated purpose of which was to stabilize and improve the prices of potatoes by keeping production levels in line with demand. Despite the various limitations of the co-operatives, including the fact that they were voluntary organizations and had only been in operation for a short period of time, the Tribunal noted that, since their inception, the co-operatives had been able to reduce the total potato acreage harvested in the U.S.

The Tribunal also noted a shift in the potato varieties being used in the U.S. and B.C. and commented on the improved viability of the B.C. industry, noting that sales of potatoes by one of the potato sales agencies operating in the province had increased by 50% between 2000 and 2005.

Likely Volumes of Dumped Goods

The Tribunal noted that, in recent years, the oversupply situation in the U.S. marketplace had been exacerbated, resulting in low potato prices for the last several years. The Tribunal concluded that rescinding the order would result in increased imports from the U.S. in the years to come, which would eventually cause B.C. growers to cut back on their plantings and, inevitably, lose market share. Furthermore, given the size of the Washington potato market alone, where only 10% of its fresh market production is equal to the entire annual volume of potatoes grown in B.C., a continued situation of oversupply in the U.S. would result in significant volumes of extra potatoes being exported to the B.C. market.

Likely Prices of Dumped Goods

Potatoes are a commodity. Thus, the Tribunal concluded that a decrease in U.S. potato acreage, as predicted by the U.S. potato co-operatives, would likely result in increases in U.S. prices for potatoes being imported to B.C. for the 2005-2006 crop year. However, the Tribunal further concluded that, even with the predicted price increases, U.S. potato prices, with few exceptions, would remain below the established normal values for white and russet potatoes exported to B.C. Further, the Tribunal was not convinced that U.S. potato prices would increase further in the 2006-2007 crop year.

Likely Impact of Dumped Goods on the Domestic Industry

The Tribunal concluded that, should the order be rescinded, the profitability of the B.C. potato industry would be significantly affected, as B.C. is a price taker that must set its prices at levels competitive with U.S. imports. If the order is rescinded, injury would result because U.S. import prices would remain below established normal values. The Tribunal estimated that B.C. growers would likely experience a $1.2 million decrease on their bottom line for the 2005-2006 crop year alone. The Tribunal further surmised that the magnitude of injury in 2006-2007 would be even greater. The Tribunal concluded that such a loss would affect the financial health of the entire B.C. potato industry.

After reviewing these factors, the Tribunal concluded that the U.S. was likely to continue overproducing potatoes in the near to medium term and that U.S. potato imports going into B.C. would continue to be priced low. While B.C. potato growers might be able to compete at these low prices during the short term, in the longer term the financial health of the entire potato industry would be jeopardized and injury would inevitably result.

2. Exclusions

The Tribunal excluded from its order red, yellow and exotic potato varieties, an exclusion to which the BCVMC had consented at the outset of the hearing. With respect to white potatoes, however, the Tribunal denied the exclusion request on the basis that white and russet potatoes were highly substitutable in the B.C. market and an exclusion for white potatoes would likely result in injury to the B.C. industry. The Tribunal did, however, grant an exclusion for certain count-size cartons of white and russet potatoes, reasoning that these particular count sizes had been sold at prices above normal values for most of the time during the period of review.


In the end result, the Tribunal continued the anti-dumping order for white and russet potatoes, with a limited exception for certain pack sizes. This decision is extremely important for other Canadian commodities being threatened by low-priced imports. The continuation of the order reinforces the importance of protecting Canadian markets from unfair international trade practices and ensuring that protective measures stay in place so long as domestic markets continue to be injured by unfair trading, like dumping. International trade relationships are important to Canadian markets. However, all parties must be able to benefit from these relationships if they are to remain profitable.

The order on whole potatoes imported from the U.S. into B.C. represents one of the longest running anti-dumping orders for any industry in Canada. Whether or not the U.S. potato industry will refrain from exporting potatoes into the B.C. market at dumped prices in the years to come will remain to be seen at the next expiry review, five years from now.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Events from this Firm
27 Oct 2016, Seminar, Toronto, Canada

Please join members of the Blakes Commercial Real Estate group as they discuss five key provisions of a commercial real estate purchase agreement that are often the subject of much negotiation but are sometimes misunderstood.

1 Nov 2016, Seminar, Toronto, Canada

What is the emotional culture of your organization?

Every organization and workplace has an emotional culture that can have an impact on everything from employee performance to customer or client satisfaction.

3 Nov 2016, Seminar, Toronto, Canada

Join leading lawyers from the Blakes Pensions, Benefits & Executive Compensation group as they discuss recent updates and legal developments in pension and employee benefits law as well as strategies to identify and minimize common risks.

In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.