OTTAWA – Proposed changes to Meat Inspection Regulations (MIR) will leave Canadians wondering if the meat they buy is actually safe, because of the Conservatives’ reckless cutting spree. Private inspectors, who may not be qualified, will now be able to inspect meat. Worse, these changes to meat inspection rules also change what meat is acceptable – meaning already-dead meat and crippled animals’ meat will be okay for processing for Canadians’ tables.
“First the Conservatives will let private inspectors monitor meat, and now they’re essentially allowing road kill-ready meat into the food supply,” said Malcolm Allen, NDP Critic for Agriculture and Agri-Food. “Even scarier is the fact that we won’t know how long animals have been dead before processing – or even that the meat will be inspected at all.”
NDP Deputy Critic for Agriculture and Agri-Food, Ruth Ellen Brosseau (Berthier—Maskinongé), voiced concerns that these changes have been tried before – with disastrous results. “In the 1970s, Quebec had no meat processing regulations, meaning already-dead and crippled animals’ meat entered the food supply, causing the “rotten meat” scandal. The industry collapsed, and federal regulations were created as a result.”
The strength of our federal meat inspection rules must not be weakened. The NDP is echoing the calls of industry workers to keep our meat inspection system regulated, and safe for Canadians. The Conservative government must stop gambling with Canadians’ health and safety.