The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has proposed a major change to food safety regulations. If these regulations are adopted they will increase farmers’ costs, increase the cost of food, make it much harder for small fresh fruit and vegetable farmers to survive and would severely damage, if not destroy, the organic sector.
Please read the National Farmers Union‘s comments and send your own message to the CFIA and copy your own Member of Parliament (find your MP’s contact info here). The deadline for submissions is Friday April 21, 2017.
The NFU submission focuses on the need to revise the regulations to prevent undue hardship and loss for certain fruit and vegetable producers serving the domestic market and for the entire Canadian organic sector. We also call for an extension of the comment period on this regulation, in light of its potential impact on Canada’s food system. The NFU submission is in addition to, and supports the submissions by the NFU in New Brunswick and by the NFU Direct Marketing Committee. Please read all three if you have time.
The NFU recommends:
- Fresh fruit and vegetable production should be exempt from the Safe Food for Canadians Act regulations.
- In the event fresh fruit and vegetable production is not exempted, a scale-appropriate accommodation that mirrors the USA’s be adopted and applied to producers with up to $500,000 average annual sales who sell direct to consumers or retailers within 275 miles (445 kilometres) regardless of provincial boundaries.
- The Organic Products Regulations should be left under the Ministry of Agriculture, with the Canada Agricultural Products Act or a new stand-alone organic law as the enabling legislation.
- In the event the Organic Products Regulations is placed under Safe Food for Canadians Act, the section “Certification of Various Activities in Respect of Organic Products” should be removed from the regulation.
- In the event the Organic Products Regulations is placed under Safe Food for Canadians Act, section 342(3) “Period of validity” should be removed from the regulation.
- The CFIA should extend the comment period on this regulation to allow Canadians more time to provide input, considering its breadth and potential impact on our food system.
Indicate your comments are about the proposed Safe Food for Canadians Act regulations, Canada Gazette, Part I, Vol. 151, No. 3 — January 21, 2017 and send your comments to:
Richard Arsenault, Executive Director
Domestic Food Safety Systems and Meat Hygiene Directorate
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
1400 Merivale Road, Tower 1
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0Y9