March 29, 1901

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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

I do not think that is necessary at all : providing there is nothing to prohibit it being done, it could be done.

Hon. Mr. ROSS (Victoria, N.S.) There is objection to having too many brands on each barrel. I think it is better to confine the Ontario packing to Ontario, and the Quebec packing to Quebec, and in the same way with Nova Scotia. You will then keep the shipping separately.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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CON

Seymour Eugene Gourley

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GOURLEY.

I agree with the hon. member for Annapolis, that it is essential that we should put on the barrel the place of growth of the apples, and we need not interfere in the slightest degree with the standard. Let the standard be the same fox-all the provinces. I have heard, and I will take the opportunity of bringing it before this House, that last summer the Nova Scotia apples at the Paris exhibition were mixed up with Quebec apples, and the prizes that went to Quebec were owing to the superior excellence of the apples of Nova Scotia. We want to avoid that difficulty in future.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

Peter Macdonald (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER.

I would remind the committee that we should discuss section 4 instead of sections 6 and 7.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

William Forsythe McCreary

Liberal

Mr. McCREARY.

I have already spoken in the Committee of Agriculture on this matter. My attention has been called to it by the Winnipeg Board of Trade, and also by several merchants in my own county. A great deal of attention is paid in this Bill to the export trade. I submit that one of the most important localities for the consumption of applies from the eastern provinces are the territories west of Lake Superiox-. As a matter of fact, most families up there use from one to ten barrels of apples every season, and we find that the first two or three rows of apples on the top of the barrel are all right, while the apples below are useless. There are some very unkind remarks made xip there against the fruit-growers of the east on account of the way in which they pack their a'pples. We supposed they all came from Ontario, but I am surprised to know that a large quantity comes from Nova Scotia. I trust for the sake of Nova Scotia, they are not guilty of the charge that we lay at the door of the Ontario people. Great care should be taken in passing this Bill. I am sorry I had not sufficient time to send a copy to the various wholesale men in Manitoba and the Territories, in order to get

tlieir opinion upon it. I want strongly to impress upon the committee the importance of passing this Bill in such a way that it will be of some use to us. I do not see why a rule somewhat similar to that which we have established for wheat may not be applied to fruit. As you know, wheat is graded, not only for Manitoba, but for the entire Territories ; it is graded No. 1 hard. No. 2 hard, No. 1 Northern, No. 1 rejected, and so on, and I do not see why apples should not be graded in the same way, without designating the province that they come from.

Mr. LaRIYIERE. I am glad that the minister has introduced this measure, because I believe it is a step in the right direction. I agree with the remarks of my hon. friend from Selkirk (Mr. McCreary), when he says that in the west we are made the victims of men without conscience in the east with regard to the way they pack fruit. I have in my hand a letter dated March 7, which was sent to me by the Winnipeg Board of Trade on this very question, and which I will read :

Winnipeg, March 7th, 1901. Mr. A. A. C. LaRiviSre, M.P.,

House of Commons, Ottawa, Ont.

Dear Sir,-I have the honour, by direction of this board, to ask if you will kindly, on their behalf, urge upon the government, and the Minister of Agriculture in particular, in whose department we understand the matter rests, to, if necessary, enact such legislation as will secure the public from fraud in connection with the packing of apples in barrels for sale by the barrel.

There is probably no article of consumption in Manitoba in connection with the sale of which such fraudulence prevails, as in connection with the apples shipped to Manitoba, from Ontario principally. It is well within the mark to say that it is the rule rather than the exception when a consumer purchases a barrel of apples to find dishonesty exhibited in the packing, and there appears to be no recourse against the fraud perpetrated by the ordinary packer. It is extremely rare that the apples in the middle of the barrels are anything like those placed at either end, with the evident intent of deceiving the consumer. The necessarily high freight paid on apples from Ontario to Manitoba adds greatly to their cost to the consumer, and the latter pays high prices for apples which, through the fraudulent packing, he does not actually receive.

This board suggests that there should be either an inspection of apples barrelled for sale, or that a penalty should be imposed on any packer who does not brand the barrel at the time of packing with the class of apples so barrelled, and his name and address, and such packer should also be open to severe penalties in case he brands the barrels as containing a higher grade of apples than they actually contain, or with the intent to defraud.

Thousands of dollars are lost to the people of Manitoba in connection with the sale of apples in this province, and this board considers that it is the duty of the government to protect the people in this matter.

Yours faithfully,

(Sgd.) C. N. BELL,

Secretary.

Although provisions are made here whereby the barrel should be stamped, I think the law is not yet stringent enough to put a stop to other frauds that are committed, not by the packers, but by middlemen. After a barrel has been stamped and after the proper brands of apples that it contains have been removed, there is nothing to prevent parties from replacing those brands with fruits of an inferior quality while the stamp remains on the barrel. With regard to tobacco, there is a provision whereby the moment a box that is stamped is opened the box has to be destroyed. I would not go to such an extreme with regard to the barrels containing apples, but at the same time I think the law should be much more severe than is here proposed against those who commit this fraud which to my mind is equal to a straight robbery. A mere fine of from 25 cents to $1 is ridiculously low to punish such a fraud. It is an ordinary case of robbery, and I believe should be punished as such. I hope that the Bill will he so amended later on as to make more stringent provisions against such frauds. This Bill is a step in the right direction, and I hope that the minister will see that it is made more perfect and more complete in order to attain the object in view.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

William Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (South Ontario).

I am glad to hear from hon. gentlemen commendations in regard to the principle of this Bill. I think that perhaps the most important clause is section a of clause 4 : that the initials of the Christian name and the full surname and address of the packer shall he given. That makes the packer responsible. A man cannot put his name on a package of fruit unless the contents are just what they are represented to be. I believe that the suggestion of the hon. member (Mr. LaRivitSre) is a good one. When tobacco is sold, the packages have to be destroyed, and would it not he well to provide that after the contents are taken out of a barrel of apples all the marks on the barrels should be obliterated so that they cannot he used again. That would be a further protection to the public. The moment a barrel of coal oil is emptied we have to scrape off the marks of the inspector, and I think the same rules should be applied to apple barrels. I believe that this Bill will prevent a good deal of fraud, and I am glad the minister (Hon. Mr. Fisher) has introduced it. I represent a number of shippers in my riding, and have had letters from them in regard to this Bill. I am informed by one of the largest shippers that when the apples come to be sold in Liverpool, for all quantities over twenty barrels a sample barrel is turned up, but for all quantities under twenty barrels the head is just taken off the barrel and they are sold by the sample of the top of the barrel. Consequently the cull apples are shipped in quantities of less than twenty barrels, and the top of the barrel only being

seen, numerous frauds have been perpetrated upon the English buyers. If the number of barrels is over twenty, the whole of the fruit in one barrel has to be exposed and the rest are guaranteed like the sample. On quantities less than twenty barrels, no name is necessary, and the shipper himself does not put the brand on, them, so that fraud results. I think the pith of this whole Bill lies in the fact that the man becomes responsible for the fruit he puts in the package.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BORDEN (Halifax).

So far as I understand the scope of the Bill, I do not think there is any necessity for a provision that the marks should be erased, because they are not put on the barrel by the inspector, but by the man himself, and therefore if you compel him to erase the marks he can put them back again the next moment. If the marks were put on by the inspector the suggestion of the hon. gentleman would be in point.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

The hon. gentleman (Mr. Borden) is quite right. There are no marks intended to be put upon the packages by the inspector except where the packages are found to be fraudulently marked, and then the inspector stamps it ' falsely marked ' and erases the original marks. In the case of coal oil barrels the marks are put on by the inspector, and of course they must be erased, but in this Bill there is no provision of that kind, and I do not think it is necessary. I do not think this Bill can deal with the use of packages over again. It would be a straight case of fraud without regard to the marks at all, and the package would be liable to the penalties under section 5. Although the person may not be himself a packer, still if he offers a barrel falsely marked for sale he is liable, and I think that clause covers the case. In reply to my hon. friend from Provencher (Mr. LaRiviere), I may say that I received the resolution of the Winnipeg Board of Trade after this Bill had been printed and distributed, and I was very glad to know that the Winnipeg Board of Trade entirely endorsed the principle of the Bill. A Bill of a similar character last year was pretty thoroughly discussed, and so I did not think it necessary to go into details when I moved the second reading. I shall be very happy to receive any suggestions which may tend to improve the Bill.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

It appears to me from a perusal of the Bill, that if the packer or shipper puts upon the package the designation of the fruit and calls them ' A No. 1,' and it turns out they are inferior, that there is no penalty.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

There is under clause 5.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

I do not think that would cover it. Subsection c of section 4 says that you should put the designation of the Mr. ROSS (South Ontario).

grade of fruit; section 6 says that if he is going to mark ' A No. 1 ' or 'A No. 1 for Canadian export,' they must be of a certain quality, and the description is given of that quality. The same provision is made in section 7. Then, under section 8 there is a penalty for the violation of any of these sections.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

Section 8 applies to the whole Bill.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

It does, but all section 4 requires him to do is to put the designation of the grade, and it does not say anything as to what the grade shall be. There are two classes of people we wish to protect by this Bill. One class is the honest packer and shipper, a very important class and the class that I am interested in ; the other is the purchaser. Now, the dishonest packer can comply with the provisions of section 4, and ninety-nine purchasers out of one hundred would not know that it made the slightest difference in a barrel of apples being marked ' A No. 1 ' or ' A No. 1 Canadian.' The Bill does not go far enough in that respect. I believe that every man who ships a barrel of fruit should not only put the designation of the grade of fruit, but that we should also designate by this Bill what shall be ' A No. 1 ' and ' No. 2,' and so on. Then there is some protection to the shipper and some protection to the purchaser. I trust the minister will see his way clear to amend the Bill in that direction.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

I am pleased that the Minister of Agriculture has introduced a Bill of this character because it will be a protection to the fruit-grower, a protection to the packer, and a protection to the purchaser. Clause 4, which seeks to guard against fraud, is a. very important one. I was sorry to learn from the hon. member from Selkirk (Mr. McCreary) that a poor quality of apples was shipped from the east to the west, and I think he said that these apples were of Nova Scotia production.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

Fletcher Bath Wade

Liberal

Mr. WADE.

He was only joking.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

Well, he Included Ontario, but he may have referred more particularly to Nova Scotia. Now, I am correct in saying that Nova Scotia is renowned throughout the world as having the very best character of fruit; and I will corroborate that statement by informing this House that at an exhibition in the city of London some years ago, among the many varieties of fruit there exhibited, the Lunenburg fruit took the first and gold prize, and Nova Scotia fruit has continued to maintain its reputation ever since, The county I have the honour to represent is engaged very largely in fruit-growing, and its soil and climate are well adapted to produce fruit such as I have described. Annapolis is also known as a fruit-growing

county, the fruit of the Annapolis valley being particularly renowned, though it does not surpass the fruit produced in the county which I have the honour to represent. I think it is well, as the hon. member for Annapolis says, that we should mark the grade of apple on the barrel, giving the kind of apple and the name of the packer, so that if any fraud is committed by anybody, the packer will be the person who will be looked to for redress. I feel that every safeguard should be thrown around the fruit-grower, and this clause should not pass until every part of it is carefully considered.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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CON

Seymour Eugene Gourley

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GOURLEY.

I want to point out that the grading of an apple does not depend on the mere name of the apple. Thus, a No. 1 Gravenstein of Ontario is not the same fruit as a No. 1 Gravenstein of Nova Scotia. I come from an apple-growing district myself, though it is not so extensive as the Annapolis valley ; and I think we ought to listen to each other with respect in regard to these matters, in order to learn the capabilities of Canada. In the Annapolis valley there are two ranges of mountains, one on either side, which in the day time protect the fruit from winds, and secures great heat, which is essential to give growth and colour to the fruit; and the nights are cool, which give the apple flavour and juice. In Nova Scotia there is an ideal climate for growing apples of the finest quality. In Ontario you have hot days, in which the apple stews to death, and hot nights which dry it up ; so that in the morning you have an apple without a particle of flavour or juice. Therefore, if I went into the London market and asked for a No. 1 Gravenstein apple, and if it were not a Nova Scotia apple, I would be imposed upon. The apple should be distinctly branded ' Gravenstein No. 1, Nova Scotia,' so that the Londoner will know when he buys it that he is getting a beautiful, highly flavoured apple, which is an ornament to any table in the world. I want to differentiate the apples of Nova Scotia from the apples of Ontario ; for the two are as different from each other as daylight is from darkness. If you want to grade the apples, you must make your standard honest and just ; but you will not be doing so, if.you call them all Canadian alike. Call them apples No. 1 Nova Scotia, and apples No. 1 Ontario, and then a fool in London will know which to buy.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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CON

Charles Edwin Kaulbach

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. KAULBACH.

The hon. member for Colchester (Mr. Gourley) has taken this House quite by surprise by showing himself to be a fruit scientist. I fully endorse what he has said, for a very great deal is to be said for mild days and cool nights in producing flavour and colour in apples. If those points could be carefully considered by those who profess to be scientists in the matter, and a record kept with regard to the proper growth and care of apples, I 75

think it would be very valuable, and an educator to fruit growers.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

George McEwen

Liberal

Mr. McBWEN.

I think our friends from Nova Scotia should have one end of the barrel labelled Nova Scotia, and leave the other end for the rest of Canada. I would like to ask what will be done in the case of apples of the same variety which are differently named by different people.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE.

It is well known that there are certain varieties of apples which pass under one name in one place and under another name in other places. Two or three names are sometimes applied indifferently to the same variety. But where we require the name of the variety to be given, there could be no exception taken to a name being used which is generally known in the locality. As a matter of fact, I understand fully the situation which the hon. gentleman mentions, and the fruit-growers and shippers who discussed this matter thoroughly, did not consider that there would be any difficulty in that respect.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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LIB

William Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (South Ontario).

I understand that nearly all apples are bought by men who have their storage warehouses, where they select and repack the apples. I know that is the case with apples for export; I do not know how it is with regard to the local trade. But in case hon. members should get the impression, from the discussion which we have had, that it is only in Nova Scotia that good apples are grown, I beg to say that Ontario holds the palm for apples, especially the county which I have the honour to represent, and more particularly the southern part of it. There we grow the choicest and finest apples it is possible to produce. I think it is important that we should have a regular Canadian brand, whether the apples come from Ontario or Nova Scotia, or any other province, and let them be required to come up to a high standard. I cannot see any objection to have included in the brand, in smaller letters, the name of the province from which the apples come, which would serve all practical purposes.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS-EMPLOYMENT OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE.
Subtopic:   INSPECTION OF FRUIT PACKAGES.
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March 29, 1901