Google Translate Disclaimer

A number of pages on the Government of Saskatchewan`s web site have been professionally translated in French. These translations are identified by a yellow text box that resembles the link below and can be found in the right hand rail of the page. The home page for French-language content on this site can be found here:

Renseignements en Français

Where an official translation is not available, Google™ Translate can be used. Google™ Translate is a free online language translation service that can translate text and web pages into different languages. Translations are made available to increase access to Government of Saskatchewan content for populations whose first language is not English.

The results of software-based translation do not approach the fluency of a native speaker or possess the skill of a professional translator. The translation should not be considered exact, and may include incorrect or offensive language Government of Saskatchewan does not warrant the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of any information translated by this system. Some files or items cannot be translated, including graphs, photos, and other file formats such as portable document formats (PDFs).

Any person or entities that rely on information obtained from the system does so at his or her own risk. Government of Saskatchewan is not responsible for any damage or issues that may possibly result from using translated website content. If you have any questions about Google™ Translate, please visit: Google™ Translate FAQs.

Canaryseed an Exciting New Food Ingredient

By Mitchell Japp, Provincial Specialist, Cereal Crops, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture and Shawn Gibson, Manager, Research Unit, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture

Canaryseed ready to harvest.
The market for canaryseed, normally grown as bird seed, has just gotten significantly larger due to the recent approval of some varieties for human consumption.

Most canaryseed grown in Saskatchewan is the hairy type – horribly itchy and not suitable for the food market – but Dr. Pierre Hucl, a crop breeder at the Crop Development Centre, had a vision for canaryseed as something more than feed for birds. He developed hairless (glabrous) varieties of canaryseed, eliminating the irritating silica hairs on the hulls.

With the support of the Saskatchewan Agriculture Development Fund, the Canaryseed Development Commission of Saskatchewan (CDCS) and Dr. Carol Ann Patterson of Pathfinders Research and Management Ltd., completed a research project to demonstrate the safety of canaryseed for human consumption. Working with the CDCS, Dr. Patterson led the research and prepared the submissions for Health Canada and the United States Food and Drug Administration. In 2015, both regulatory agencies supported the submissions.

In Canada, dehulled, glabrous canaryseed has been approved as a novel human food – the first cereal crop to achieve this status. In the United States, dehulled, glabrous canaryseed has Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status.

However, there is still work to be done. Canaryseed is gluten-free, but it contains a protein similar to an allergenic protein in wheat. When used as a food ingredient, a label will be required explaining that canaryseed may not be suitable for individuals with a wheat allergy, unless wheat is already an ingredient. Celiac sufferers will be able to consume canaryseed, while those with wheat allergies should avoid it until more is known about this potential allergenic protein. 

Canaryseed is a new food crop available for production, processing and marketing. It has excellent potential as a food ingredient with a wide range of applications in many products and markets.

For more information visit and select Specialty Crops or visit the CDCS website at

We need your feedback to improve Help us improve