The Canada Agricultural Review Tribunal has dismissed three trucking fines, each totaling $7,800, against a company hauling spent fowl to the Maple Lodge Farms processing plant near Brampton, Ont.
Tribunal chairman Don Buckingham writes in his decision that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency was not able to prove its accusations against 473629 Ontario Inc. (Little Rock Farm Trucking) owned by Mark Reuber.
Most of the evidence covered in the written decision concerns a shipment picked up in September, 2012, from Giroux’s Poultry Farm Inc. at Chazy, New York. it is listed as a delivery from Lacolle, Que.
The evidence indicates that 425 birds were dead on arrival at Maple Lodge’s plant. The weather was cold and wet, the tarps were not down on the truck and the birds had poor feathering.
The other two cases involved 537 dead birds delivered from Fort Erie in October and 583 dead in a delivery in January, 2013, from Lacolle, Que.
The Fort Erie and Lacolle, Que., sites are border crossings from the United States.
The tribunal is scheduled to hear five more appeals from trucking companies, including another involving Maple Lodge Farms.
The chicken marketing boards and national agency are probably not pleased with this decision.
If they had their way, no spent fowl would be allowed into Canada.