The inspectors will visit
different parts of Canada where fish is put up. For example, if the inspector is advised that at some point in Gaspe, or Bonaventure, or in the Maritime provinces fish are ready for inspection, he will go there and put his mark on the barrel according to the grade of the fish. When the Bill is introduced it is my intention to move that it be referred to the Select Standing Committee on Marine and Fisheries, so that it may have the advantage of its details being discussed by that committee, and the opinion of the officials of the department presented. I have no doubt it will receive careful consideration from the committee, and if any amendments are offered in the public interest they will be considered, because although the Bill is, I think, very carefully thought out at present, there may be improvements made in it.
The pickled fish industry of Canada, which includes the trade in salted herring, mackerel, alewives and salmon, has been for years in a languishing condition. Dealers in many cases refuse absolutely to have anything to do with the cured product. The cause of this is to be found, first, in the poor, leaky packages of varying size, which are in common use and which invariably ruin their contents in the course of transportation; and, second, to the lack of a proper system of grading the fish, together with careless, unsystematic packing.
This Bill, as I have pointed out to the committee, is intended to bring into general use an improved standard barrel for curing and marketing pickled fish, and to raise the standard of curing and packing to such a degree that the cured article shall secure the confidence of dealers at home and abroad.
To carry out the provisions of the Bill, when it becomes law, a small staff of inspectors will be appointed and duly drilled and instructed in their duties. These will
thereafter form a sort of travelling school of instruction in their several districts, for barrel-makers, fishermen and other packers. In addition to this, regulations in the form of a book of detailed instructions will be placed in the hands of packers, etc., for their guidance.