Lettuce

  1. General Requirements
    • 1.1 Grades
    • 1.2 Similar Varietal Characteristics
    • 1.3 Properly Packed and Marked
    • 1.4 Inspection Procedures
  2. Size
  3. Colour
  4. Cleanliness
  5. Freshness
  6. Maturity Or Firmness
  7. Trimming
  8. Permanent Defects
    • 8.1 Broken Midribs
    • 8.2 Burst Heads
    • 8.3 Doubles
    • 8.4 Insects
    • 8.5 Mechanical Damage
    • 8.6 Ribby Leaves
    • 8.7 Seed Stems
    • 8.8 Other Permanent Defects
  9. Condition Defects
    • 9.1 Bruising
    • 9.2 Crushed Midribs
    • 9.3 Decay
    • 9.4 Discolouration
    • 9.5 Freezing Injury
    • 9.6 Other Condition Defects
  10. General Tolerances
  11. Requirements for Movement of Lettuce
    • 11.1 Interprovincial Movement
    • 11.2 Export
    • 11.3 Import

1. General Requirements

1.1 Grades

The grades for head lettuce are Canada No. 1 and Canada No. 2. These standards are concerned only with "head" or "Iceberg" types. This includes varieties of lettuce that have firm heads and are crisp, but does not include varieties that have soft heads and an oily feeling like the Boston, Butter or Bibb types; does not include Romaine, the type that has leaves that grow upright or leaf lettuce which does not have any head formation.

1.2 Similar Varietal Characteristics

Head lettuce in both grades must have similar varietal characteristics, that is "Iceberg" type may not be mixed with a firm "Big Boston" type.

1.3 Properly Packed and Marked

1.3.1 Requirements

The Regulations require that lettuce be "properly packed". Lettuce must meet the requirements as defined in Schedule I and II of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Regulations and the marking requirements must be provided directly on the packages or on a tag attached thereto. You will find all the requirements for marking in Part III of the Regulations or in Appendix VIII of the Inspection Manual.

1.3.2 Tightness of Packages

In some instances there may be a correlation between the tightness of the package and damage found on the heads of lettuce. When damages of the heads are related to the tightness of packages, the following terms will be used.

Very Tight: Very tight means the extreme condition described under "tight" that is too tight which may result in damage such as distortion of the heads, crushing of the head or crushing of the midribs.

Tight: Tight means sufficiently packed to prevent movement of the head within the package and tightly packed without causing injury to the heads.

Fairly Tight: Fairly tight means the pack is not ideal but is between "tight" and "slack", however, the heads are tight enough to prevent movement within the packages. Under normal handling conditions, no damage will be done to the heads.

Slack: Slack means the package is clearly not full and a free movement of the heads is possible or evident. Damage to the head is possible.

1.3.3 Number of Heads per Container

When lettuce is put in packages, 10% of the packages may contain more or less than the number of heads marked on the packages. This means that 90% of the packages must have the exact number of heads as marked on packages. Every package having at least one more or less head as per the number marked will be scored against this tolerance.

1.4 Inspection Procedure

1.4.1 Terminology Used

The following are some definitions which will be used:

Head: Consist of a group of leaves which are attached at the root system of the plant.

Wrapper Leaves: Those leaves which do not fairly closely enfold the edible portion of the head.

Head Leaves: All leaves which fairly closely enfold and make up the edible portion of the head.

Cap Leaf: The outermost head leaf. It is the first leaf covering half of the crown and is not separated from the top of the crown by more than 1 1/4 inches (31.8 mm).

Crown: The upper half of the edible portion of the head.

Midribs: The central vein of the leaf.

Butt: The base of the lettuce from which all the leaves are attached and from which the roots spring.

1.4.2 Sampling

Lettuce is inspected by count. The entire contents of each sample carton must be examined when inspecting lettuce.

1.4.3 Method of examining Lettuce

First, the firmness has to be checked. Firmness is properly determined by placing the base of the head or the butt in one hand and the top of the head in the palm of the other with fingers extending down the sides of the head under the wrapper leaves. Squeeze the head once. Repeated squeezing may break down the rib structure so that no accurate assessment can be made of solidity.

After solidity has been established, wrapper and head leaves are examined for permanent and condition defects. In order to prevent any extensive loss to the shipper, the shipping point inspector will gently open the wrapper leaves by taking care to not break them unnecessarily.

To determine the presence of internal defects, the inspector has to strike the butt sharply so that all midribs separate from the butt. Then, he or she can spread out the head leaves for internal examination. All parts of the compact portion have to be broken open in order to make a thorough examination.

1.4.3.1 Wrapped Lettuce

When conducting inspections on cello-wrapped lettuces, all leaves are to be scored as head leaves.  This means that regardless of the type of leaf, all leaves are to be scored as head leaves.

1.4.4 Examining for Internal Defects

The inspector should not indiscriminately open up heads of lettuce in search of internal defects. The inspector should, however, deliberately determine at the commencement of the inspection if internal defects are a problem.

It is done by choosing 5 heads at random from each of the first 2 sample cartons and opening all 10 heads. If no internal defects are found, then no more heads need be opened.

If internal defects such as tipburn, seed stems and some other defects are a problem, then it is important that inspectors be uniform in their sampling procedure. A minimum of 5 heads per remaining sample carton are chosen on a predetermined random basis without regard for external defects. 

All chosen heads will be opened and defective specimens will be scored against the opened heads. After the opened lettuce is scored for internal defects, the remaining lettuce in the container is scored for external defects.

1.4.5 Reporting Condition of Leaves

To clearly describe the condition of the lettuce at destination, the inspector will report those defects affecting the wrapper leaves separately from those affecting the head leaves. When the individual head has a combination of defects on the wrapper and head leaves, score the most serious defect.

Example: decay on wrapper leaves is more serious than discolouration on head leaves. However, when it is the same defect that appears on the wrapper and head leaves, score the defect on the head leaves and make a general statement that this defect also appears on the wrapper leaves.

Example: average 10%, range nil to 15% decay on the head leaves affecting from 1 to 4, mostly 2 leaves and also affecting a few wrapper leaves.

At shipping point, the inspector must always separate decay affecting wrapper leaves and butt from decay affecting the head leaves because the tolerances are different. Again when decay is present on all parts, do not score twice or three times the same head. Score in the following order; head leaves are scored first and when decay is not present on head leaves score butt before scoring wrapper leaves.

The following are a few examples:

  • Average 12% range nil to 20% decay on head leaves affecting from 1 to 4 mostly 2 leaves. In addition, all heads show 2 or 3 wrapper leaves with decay.
  • 100% decay affecting mostly 2 or 3 wrapper leaves only.
  • Wrapper leaves: average 12% range 8% to 17% decay affecting 2 to 4 leaves. Average 20%, range 15% to 25% brown discolouration affecting 2 to 4 leaves and affecting more than half the area of the leaf in aggregate.
  • "Head leaves": average 9%, range 5% to 12% decay affecting 1 to 4 leaves, mostly 3 to 4. Average 5%, range 2% to 7% russet spotting affecting more than 2 leaves.
  • No decay in evidence. Average 15%, range 8% to 22% marginal browning discolouration affecting 2 to 5 wrapper leaves. Average 12% of opened specimens range 8% to 15% tipburn affecting 1 to 4 head leaves, mostly 1 to 2.
  • Average 15%, range 12% to 20% decay affecting all wrapper leaves. Average 6%, range 2% to 9% pink rib affecting more than 4 head leaves. Brownish discolouration penetrating more than half inch (12.7 mm) into the butt average 22% range 15% to 30%.

2. Size

There is no minimum and maximum diameter requirement for lettuce. However, lettuce in Canada No. 1 grade cannot vary by more than 2 inches (51 mm) in diameter within the same container and 10% of the packages may contain heads that exceed the permitted size variation. Also, included in the 10% is packages that have a greater or lesser number of heads than the number marked therein. The measurement for size variation shall be the largest diameter of a head taken at right angles to a line from the butt to the top of the crown of the lettuce.

There is no such requirement for Canada No. 2 grade.

3. Colour

There is no colour requirement as such in either grade, however, the colour of heads must be characteristic of the variety and anything other than normal green could affect the grade.

At shipping point, the colour must be described on the certificate under the colour heading e.g., characteristic green. At destination, any discolouration affecting the grade will be reported under the condition heading. For more details regarding these discolourations, please refer to Section 9.6 of this manual.

4. Cleanliness

Heads smeared with mud or caked dirt on leaves is caused by rain or heavy irrigation. If reasonable care is used at harvesting, this condition may be avoided. High winds during growth when the head is not tightly formed can cause the presence of dirt between leaves.

The following are the conditions under which an inspector will score a head of lettuce for cleanliness:

Canada No. 1
When the head is materially affected by "black muck" or "marsh" dust or when the wrapper or head leaves are materially smeared with mud or the base is caked with mud or dry dirt.

Canada No. 2
When the head is seriously affected by "black muck" or "marsh" dust or when the head leaves are seriously smeared with mud or dirt.

5. Freshness

Both grades require that the head leaves be crisp and have a normal succulence. Wrapper leaves are required to be not more than slightly wilted in both grades cannot be withered or shrivelled.

The following terms should be used to describe freshness:

Crisp: Crisp means turgid, brittle, breaking readily, denoting a fresh condition.

Wilted: Wilted means drooping, weak, lacking turgidity, usually on account of rapid transpiration.

Withered: Withered means dried out, withered up, a loss of moisture usually accompanied by a change of form, a more serious condition than wilted.

Shrivelled: Shrivelled means shrunken, drawn or wrinkled a marked change in form and often in size, extreme condition resulting from excessive transpiration or old age.

At destination, the inspector will score in general terms heads of lettuce which have their wrapper leaves seriously withered or shrivelled and have their head leaves seriously wilted or withered, e.g., all wrapper leaves are withered and some heads show 1 or 2 head leaves wilted.

6. Maturity or Firmness

Although there are no maturity requirements in either grade, firmness (solidity) is a factor. Lettuce leaves grow internally, sprouting out from the root system. Soft heads have excessive air spaces between head leaves. Hard, firm or fairly firm heads have layers of leaves that are separated by thin layers of air. Lack of such air space indicates start of senescence and excessively large air pockets indicate immaturity.

Firmness in lettuce will be reported as follows:

Canada No. 1
Heads must have a compact portion and yield only slightly to pressure; this means the heads will be hard or firm.

Hard: Means compact, solid, the highest degree of solidity.

Firm: Means compact but may yield slightly to moderate pressure.

Canada No. 2
Heads must have a characteristic formation, this means the heads need only be fairly firm or may be soft.

Fairly firm: Means characteristic head formation and is not soft or spongy. Has good edible content.

Soft: Means easily compressed, spongy but still has some head formation.

At shipping point, report firmness under the "maturity" heading on the certificate. At destination, report firmness under the "grade defects" heading only at the applicant's request or when the lot fails these requirements.

7. Trimming

Both grades must be properly trimmed, that is, the butts have to be cut off close to the point of attachment of the wrapper leaves. Not more than eight (8) wrapper leaves should be left attached. There are no minimum number of wrapper leaves required. It is possible for lettuce to be trimmed so close that this would result in loose leaves.  

This overtrim would cause the leaves to lose their normal succulence and become wilted. Overtrimmed lettuce will be scored in both grades when the head leaves are not crisp or are not of a normal succulence.

In addition to these requirements, any coarse, damaged or otherwise objectionable wrapper leaves have to be removed in Canada No. 1 and any coarse leaves have to be removed in Canada No. 2.

8. Permanent Defects

8.1 Broken Midribs

This defect is found on heads that are excessively hard. The inner leaves are pushing out on the outer leaves to a point where the midribs cracked. Usually broken midribs show a clear break and may also show a reddish discolouration.

It is not intended that the inspector will open heads to search for this defect unless outward examination indicates that broken midribs are present. Do not confuse with midribs which are crushed by mechanical means or by pressure. These are to be reported separately. (See Section 9.2 for description of crushed midribs.)

Broken midribs are scored as follows:

Canada No. 1
When the midribs of more than 2 head leaves are broken.

Canada No. 2
When the midribs of more than 4 head leaves are broken.

8.2 Burst Heads

Heads that are broken open are considered burst. Burst heads, same as broken midribs, result from the pressure of the expanding head (overly dense heads). In both grades, any head which is split or broken open is scoreable.

8.3 Doubles

Occasionally some plants may produce two centres of growth. This is usually the result of young plants being severely checked in growth by adverse weather conditions. Any head which clearly shows the formation of more than one centre of growth is scoreable.

8.4 Insects

8.4.1 Presence of Insects

The presence of insects to a certain quantity is scoreable against both grades. On head leaves score when more than 5 live or dead aphids and/or insects are present or one live or dead worm is found. On wrapper leaves, score when more than 15 live or dead aphids and/or insects or one live or dead worm is present.

If insects or worms are live, treat as condition because they may not have been present at shipping point; if dead, treat as permanent defects because most probably they were present at shipping point. If you have both live and dead insects or worms, treat as condition.

8.4.2 Insect Injuries

Heads damaged by the feeding of worms or insects are practically useless unless the feeding is very slight. Injuries on wrapper leaves are not scoreable.

Insect injuries or worm injuries are scoreable when:

Canada No. 1

  • more than 2 head leaves are affected;
  • frass or excreta is in sufficient quantity to be conspicuous.

Canada No. 2

  • more than 4 head leaves are affected;
  • frass or excreta is in sufficient quantity to seriously detract from appearance.

8.5 Mechanical Damage

This physical damage is principally caused by careless or rough handling. Sometimes portions of head leaves have been torn out or cut by harvesters or packers to remove discolouration or some other defect which is felt detracts from the appearance of the head.

Mechanical damages are scored as follows:

Canada No. 1
When more than 2 head leaves are appreciably torn or have pieces plucked out.

Canada No. 2
When more than 4 head leaves have been torn out.

Note: This defect will not be considered as affecting wrapper leaves.

8.6 Ribby Leaves

Due to growing conditions, midribs sometimes are very prominent. This is not considered as an injury no matter how severe. However, it may be reported only at the applicant's request. If requested, it will be reported in general terms if its severity is pronounced enough to affect the appearance of the lot, e.g., many heads have a ribby appearance.

8.7 Seed Stems

Often external characteristics, such as the shape of the head and spreading at the base between points of attachment of the midribs to the butt, may indicate that seeders are developing but this indication is not reliable in all instances. When an inspector has doubt, he or she will open the head to verify if the seeder is present.

In both grades, score when any head has an outward appearance which plainly shows the formation of a seed stem. This will include any badly misshapen specimens that have the appearance of a seeder.

8.8 Other permanent Defects

Other permanent defects which are not described in Section 8.1 to 8.7 are scored as follows:

Free from any other injury or defect or a combination thereof that.

Canada No. 1
Materially affects the appearance, edibility or shipping quality of the lettuce. "Materially affects" means when more than 2 head leaves are affected by any injury or defect.

Canada No. 2
Seriously affects the appearance, edibility or shipping quality; and

  • cannot be removed without a loss of some of the compact portion of the head. "Seriously affects" means when more than 4 head leaves are affected by any injury or defect.

9. Condition Defects

9.1 Bruising

This is seldom a problem in properly packed cartons of lettuce but could result from a shift in the load or rough handling. Bruised heads often show a pink discolouration of the injured cells or a water-soaked appearance. Pink discolouration of bruised tissue may resemble pink rib, although close examination will reveal physical injury. If scoreable, it has to be shown on the certificate as reddish brown discolouration or water-soaked appearance following bruising.

Bruising is scored when:

Canada No. 1

  • more than 1 head leaf is materially bruised, or
  • more than 2 head leaves are noticeably bruised.

"Materially bruised" means one third of the leaf. "Noticeably bruised" means one quarter of the leaf.

Canada No. 2
More than 4 head leaves are seriously bruised. "Seriously bruised" means one half of the leaf.

9.2 Crushed Midribs

Crushed midribs are principally caused by careless or rough handling. Usually one or two midribs are crushed but sometimes the force is so great that the entire head tends to be cubical rather than spherical. Usually the break is not sharp as opposed to broken midribs. (See Section 8.1.)

Crushed midribs are scored when:

Canada No. 1
More than 2 head leaves are broken due to any other cause than abnormal growth.

Canada No. 2
More than 4 head leaves are broken due to any other cause than abnormal growth.

9.3 Decay

The term decay is used in the sense of being a deterioration involving decomposition, which is induced by a fungi or a bacteria, and which is of a complete and progressive nature.

Any soft decay, breakdown or brown blight is scoreable against both grades. Rub the affected area between the fingers to be sure it is decay and not just a water-soaked area of the leaf. Decay will be reported under three headings: decay on wrapper leaves; decay on head leaves; and decay on butt end. However, if decay is found on more than 2 parts, score only the most important part, never score twice the same head. Head leaves will be scored first followed by the butt end and finally wrapper leaves. A general term description will be marked on the certificate if decay affects more than one place. (Refer to Section 1.4.5 for examples.)

9.4 Discoloration

Discolouration in lettuce can be induced by a combination of different factors like diseases, plant disorders, maturity, carbon dioxide injury, low oxygen injury or solar injury. The discolourations are difficult to distinguish from each other because cells of lettuce often die in groups, turn some shade of red or brown and collapse, no matter what the cause. Consequently the shape, the exact colour and the distribution of the lesions in the head are essential knowledge for their identification.

For the purpose of inspection, discolouration is scored under the following terminology:

Discoloured butts, pink rib, other rib discolouration, marginal browning, russet spotting, tipburn and other leaf discolouration.

9.4.1 discoloured Butts

The colour of the cut of the butt end is not necessarily a good indicator of quality. First, it might have been trimmed recently. Secondly, heads of lettuce held under identical conditions vary greatly in butt colour, from light pink to reddish brown. This is usually a result of oxidation. Occasionally butts will have a water-soaked appearance or a discolouration extending into the butt.

Discoloured butts will be scored when:

Canada No. 1
A discolouration penetrates more than 1/4 inch (6.35 mm) into the butt.

Canada No. 2
A discolouration penetrates more than 1/2 inch (12.7 mm) into the butt.

9.4.2 Pink Rib

Pink rib develops as a consequence of the cellular disruption that accompanies formation of air spaces in midribs. However, not all torn cells turn pink nor all pink cells are torn. Rapid growth is one suspected cause because pink rib frequently is associated with disrupted cells. Senescence is also involved since hard heads are more susceptible to pink rib than firm heads.

Pink rib is scoreable when:

Canada No. 1
Midribs of more than 2 head leaves show areas of deep pink colour aggregating more than 2 inches (51 mm) in length in each leaf as viewed from the outer surface of the leaf.

Canada No. 2
The colour is deep pink and affects every head leaf in excess of 4 inches (101.6 mm) in the aggregate length per leaf or the whole leaf if less than 4 inches (101.6 mm) long.

9.4.3 Other Rib Discoloration

Discolouration which is in the tissue but is visible on the outer surface is to be considered. Rib discolouration on wrapper leaves is not scoreable in either grade.

These injuries are scored as follows:

Canada No. 1

At shipping point:

  • when the aggregate length of brown or black areas of rib discolouration on the outer surface exceeds 1 inch (25.4 mm) in length on more than 1 head leaf.

At destination:

  • when the aggregate length of brown or black areas of rib discolouration on the outer surface exceeds 1 inch (25.4 mm) in length on more than 2 head leaves.

Canada No. 2

At shipping point:

  • when the aggregate length of brown or black areas of rib discolouration on the outer surface exceeds 2 inches (51 mm) in length on more than 2 head leaves.

At destination:

  • when the aggregate length of brown or black areas of rib discolouration on the outer surface exceeds 2 inches (51 mm) in length on more than 4 head leaves.

9.4.4 Marginal Browning

Marginal browning is confined to wrapper and outer head leaves and the dead, brown edges may be curled. Conditions leading to marginal browning have not been clearly identified. However, we know that it can be aggravated by long transit periods or by undesirably high transit temperatures. Marginal browning should not be confused with tipburn. (See Section 9.4.6.) The marginal browning has clean cut margins as compared to irregular veined margins for tipburn and marginal browning is confined to outer leaves as opposed to tipburn which is not necessarily confined to outer leaves.

Marginal browning is scored as follows:

Canada No. 1

At shipping point:

Wrapper leaves: when the whole margin is discoloured on 1 wrapper leaf.

Head leaves: when the aggregate length of marginal browning exceeds more than one inch (25.4 mm) on more than 1 leaf.

At destination:

Wrapper leaves: is not considered as affecting the grade.

Head leaves: when the aggregate length of marginal browning exceeds more than one inch (25.4 mm) on more than 2 leaves.

Canada No. 2

At shipping point:

Wrapper leaves: is not considered as affecting the grade.

Head leaves: when the aggregate length of marginal browning exceeds more than 3 inches (76.3 mm) on more than 2 leaves.

At destination:

Wrapper leaves: is not considered as affecting the grade.

Head leaves: when the aggregate length of marginal browning exceeds more than 3 inches (76.3 mm) on more than 4 leaves.

Note: When marginal browning is considered not affecting the grade, this condition may be reported on the certificate in general terms only at the applicant's request.

9.4.5 Russet Spotting

This term is used to describe a number of leaf discolourations which cannot be separated from each other with any degree of certainty. Russet spotting is characterized by small tan, brown or olive spots randomly distributed over the affected leaf. When severe, the spots may coalesce and form irregularly shaped discoloured areas. On the midribs, spots are usually longitudinal and pit-like, while those on the blade appear shallow, rounder and more diffuse.

Russet spotting is scored when:

Canada No. 1
The number and size of spots "materially" detracts from the appearance of the head. This means more than 1/4 inch (6.35 mm) in aggregate on more than 2 head leaves.

Canada No. 2
The number and size of spots "seriously" detracts from the appearance of the head. This means more than 1/4 inch (6.35 mm) in aggregate on more than 4 head leaves.

9.4.6 Tipburn

Tipburn is a physiological disease caused by growing conditions. It starts as small spots or narrow lesions along the edge of the leaf, light yellow or off-white in colour. These enlarge and become distinct yellow or brown and have irregular veined margins as compared to the clean cut margins found in connection with marginal browning. Tipburn is not necessarily confined to outer leaves like marginal browning. Tipburn usually spreads quite rapidly and may develop into decay under favourable conditions.

In both grades, any tipburn on head leaves will be scored, however, on wrapper leaves, it will be scored the same as other leaf discolouration. (See Section 9.4.7.)

Note: Sometimes tipburn is found only on the inner leaves with no indication on the outer leaves. In such cases, refer to the section on examining for internal defects (Section 1.4.4).

9.4.7 Other Leaf Discolouration

Any other discolouration not described in the preceding sections will be scored under the following standards.

Canada No. 1

At shipping point:

Wrapper leaves: when more than one wrapper leaf has 50% of its surface yellow or brown discoloured or its whole margin is discoloured.

Head leaves: when yellow or brown discolouration extends over an area equivalent to 1/2 of the crown.

At destination:

Wrapper leaves: is not considered as affecting the grade.

Head leaves: when the discolouration affects more than 2 head leaves to any degree.

Canada No. 2

At shipping point:

Wrapper leaves: is not considered as affecting the grade.

Head leaves: when yellow or brown discolouration affects an area equivalent to the whole crown or penetrate into the head proper.

At destination:

Wrapper leaves: is not considered as affecting the grade.

Head leaves: when the discolouration affects more than 4 head leaves to any degree.

Note: Tearing, blistering or peeling without discolouration of wrapper leaves is not considered as injury in both grades. Whitish discolouration of the epidermis is considered normal.

9.5 Freezing Injury

Lettuce freezes around -0.6 ° C. Separation of the epidermis from underlying tissue, also called blistering, is the most common sign of freezing in lettuce. The dead cells of the separated epidermis are tan when on outer leaves, but are white when on those more protected from drying. Severely frozen lettuce has a water-soaked appearance once the tissue has been thawed.

Transit freezing usually can be distinguished from field freezing; the former tends to be confined to or is more severe in the periphery of a carton, and also is more common in cartons on the periphery of a load. In contrast, field freezing is randomly distributed through the load.

The term "freezing injury" shall only be reported when ice crystals are evident. Otherwise score as peeling, blistering or as water-soaked areas resembling freezing injury.

Freezing injury is scored as follows:

Canada No. 1

  • when the area is blistering and peeling without any discolouration score when it affects more than 2 head leaves over more than 3/4 of the crown.
  • when the area is discoloured score as in discolouration (see Section 9.4.7).
  • when the area is water-soaked score when 2 head leaves are affected.
  • when ice crystals are present, describe the depth of the penetration.

Canada No. 2

  • when the area is blistering and peeling without any discolouration, score when it affects more than 4 head leaves over more than 3/4 of the crown.
  • when the area is discoloured score as in discolouration (see Section 9.4.7).
  • when the area is water-soaked score when 4 head leaves are affected.
  • when ice crystals are present, describe the depth of the penetration.

Note: Lettuce shall not be "rubbed" or "brushed" to determine damage by peeling or blistering.

It is very important to show the location of the freezing both within the package and vehicle. The location of affected specimens is generally conclusive proof whether the damage occurred prior to or after loading.

For example:

  • Freezing injuries found mixed throughout cartons and mixed throughout piling in vehicle is an indication that freezing had occurred prior to loading (field freezing).
  • Freezing injuries found in specimens and cartons contacting and/or adjacent to floor, wall and doors of the vehicle is an indication that freezing occurred in transit or after loading into the vehicle.

It will be in order to state on the certificate that the location indicates that freezing injuries did or did not occur in the vehicle if the facts bear this out. This statement shall not be made on certificates covering lots of lettuce that have been set aside in vehicle, as these lots are not in the original piling.

Every effort will be made to inspect the complete content of the vehicle when the vehicle is fully loaded and the load is in a frozen state. It will be in order to take temperatures, piling and location of frozen cartons (if possible). All the cartons will be examined and the results, quantity of frozen cartons and non-frozen cartons shown on the certificate.

9.6 Other Condition Defects

Other condition defects which are not described in Section 9.1 to 9.5 are scored as follows: free from any other injury or defect or a combination thereof that:

Canada No. 1:

  • Materially affects the appearance, edibility or shipping quality of the lettuce.
  • Materially affects means when more than 2 head leaves are affected by any injury or defect.

Canada No. 2:

  • seriously affects the appearance, edibility or shipping quality; and
  • cannot be removed without a loss of some of the compact portion of the head.
  • seriously affects means when more than 4 head leaves are affected by any injury or defect.

10. General Tolerances

Notwithstanding anything in these Regulations in the grading of head lettuce, the grade standard for a grade shall still be met if not more than:

  • 10% of the packages, where the head lettuce is in packages, may contain a greater or lesser number of heads than the number marked therein or may contain heads that exceed the permitted size variation.
  • 2% of the heads by count may be affected by decay in the compact portion.
  • 3% of the heads by count, may be affected by decay; and
  • 10% of the heads by count may have grade defects.

11. Requirements for Movement of Lettuce

11.1 Interprovincial Movement

Lettuce shall not be sent or conveyed from one province to another unless they are packed or marked properly and meet one of the following grades:  "Canada No. 1" and "Canada No. 2".

Lettuce not meeting the above requirements or moving in non-standard containers (e.g., bulk bins) shall not move interprovincially unless the Minister or a delegate of the Minister has granted a Ministerial Exemption.

11.2 Export

Lettuce being exported outside of Canada must meet the requirements of one of the following grades: "Canada No. 1" and "Canada No. 2".

Lettuce not meeting the above requirements or moving in non-standard containers shall not be exported unless the Minister or a delegate of the Minister has granted a Ministerial Exemption. In such instances, the foreign consignee is required to give us a written confirmation of the transaction. The confirmation could take the form of a telex, a facsimile letter on company letterhead or an original letter.

11.3 Import

Lettuce being imported must meet the requirements of one of the following grades: "Canada No. 1" and "Canada No. 2".

We have an agreement with the U.S.D.A. and their inspectors have the authority to certify lettuce going to Canada on their following standards: "U.S. Fancy", "U.S. No. 1" and "U.S. No. 2".

Again, these requirements are those for properly packed and marked lettuce going for the fresh market. Lettuce not meeting those grades or not meeting our standard containers shall not be imported unless the Minister or a delegate of the Minister has granted a Ministerial Exemption.