Harper does it again: Undermining Canadian business and industry (this time on beef)
If you want to undermine Canadian beef at home and abroad in one fell swoop you only need to take away the long-standing trust people have held for the safety of our food industries. A fundamental trust that has been rebuilt from BSE in particular. And that undermining has been brought on by undercutting Canada’s food inspectors and their resources.
- Food-safety workers among hardest-hit by Harper budget cuts
- Globe and Mail covers the subject
- The Edmonton Journal highlights the growing recall of Albertan meat
- Globe and Mail: CFIA food safety officer defends timing of decision on beef recall
- Edmonton Journal: Glacial response of federal authorities to contaminated meat put public health at risk
Understaffed, underfunded, and with senior folks bled dry from overwork, the people who are in charge of the health and safety of Canadians with regards to food production have been thoroughly undermined. You can’t catch E. Coli before it enters the consumers hands when you’ve lost inspectors, lost the funding for facilities and testing, and don’t have the ability to reach those you need to be supporting.
It’s a basic undermining of Canadian safety. If Canadians cannot trust their meats processors and the long-standing safety they have grown to count on, they’ll stop buying beef. If Americans cannot trust the Canadian government to secure a basic level of safety it’s going to lead to another ban on Albertan beef – again. And it’s going to undermine Canadian industries and the Canadian economy at a time when it would be incredibly bad to do so.
It has shown a demonstrable inadequacy on the part of Prime Minister Harper and the Conservative government to promote confidence in Alberta’s industries and to secure a strong, open connection for our products into the United States. When you slash funding for basic services like this you undermine Canada as a whole and its security.