Canada's new Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau says the government is taking a science-based approach to solving the issue involving China and Winnipeg-based Richardson International.

During a stop in Winnipeg on Wednesday, Bibeau was asked if she thinks China's decision to halt shipments of canola seed from Richardson was politically motivated.

marie claude bibeau smallMarie-Claude Bibeau

"I want to push the scientific discussion as far as possible," she said. "It was a success in the past, so this is the core message but as I said, obviously, we are taking every option into consideration."

China has stated that they found shipments from Richardson containing hazardous pests.

"Obviously, when we have been informed that they have found some kind of pests, we return to our own samples to double-check and we haven't found any irregularities," added Bibeau. "So we are really pushing the Chinese officials to either send us a new samples of what they found or we could also send some of our scientists over there. Because obviously if there's something, we want to know it because we would have to take action."

She said so far Richardson has been the only company that has been flagged by the Chinese.

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