April 23, 1918

UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

The Meat and. Canned Foods Act was intended to apply only to the foods enumerated that were intended ,for export or for interprovincial trade. I think the point to which the hon. gentleman refers is covered by municipal and provincial inspection, that is, in relation *to foods that are manufactured, say, at the point in which they are consumed. This Act does not apply to such foods, but if such foods are shipped either for export pr for interprovincial trade, it does apply to them.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink

Section agreed to. On section 2-Exports or imports of uninspected articles:


UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

I may explain that at present the regulations apply only to exported foods; they do not cover imported foods of a similar character. Their purpose, I am told, when originally passed, was to set a standard for Canadian articles exported to foreign markets, in order that we might establish a reputation abroad. But there is this curious anomaly, that there are no similar restrictions on foods imported into Canada, with the result that foods can be imported into this country without any (supervision as to their quality. We are now asking for power so that the department may require proper certification of the foods imported into Canada.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
LIB

William Cameron Edwards

Liberal

Mr. EDWARDS:

Who will carry out this inspection, and where will it be done?

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

It is intended to have the customs officials do it. When the goods are entered for import into Canada these officials will see that the proper certificates are attached.

Mr. DuTREMBLAY: Is the certificate

furnished by the American or by the Canadian inspector?

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

The certification will have to be satisfactory to the Veterinary Director General or to the Minister of Agriculture, who may accept certification of United States Government officials as to the wholesomeness of the foods manufactured in that country.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNION

Edward Walter Nesbitt

Unionist

Mr. NESBITT:

There has been a good deal of talk, and I have no doubt the minister has heard something of it, about the quality of the canned fruit and vegetables put up by our canners for the army. Is there any inspection of these factories at the present time by the Dominion Government? If there is no inspection, there certainly should be.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

There is an inspection by the officials of the Department of Agriculture. The inspector is not located permanently at the point of manufacture, but he can drop in at any hour of any day and examine the goods in the process of manufacture. The British authorities have instituted a very rigid system of inspection of all canned goods for shipment abroad for army purposes. The other day, when we were discussing the resolution on which this Bill is founded, reference was made by an hon. member to a case at Belleville. Curiously enough, I have received a letter from this manufacturer, who had seen the reference to his factory in the newspapers. I have confirmed by inquiry the following, taken from this letter:

The facts are that all the vegetables manufactured in Canada for the British, French and United States Governments are rigidly inspected first by the IMilton Hersey Company, whose headquarters are in Montreal, and who have a very highly trained staff of officials. They place in every factory where these goods are manufactured one or more inspectors sufficient to examine every pound of vegetables before they are manufactured, also during the processing, and after they are manufactured and packed. They stamp every package and every case and every sack in which these goods are shipped or transferred from the manufacturing sub-station to the central packing depot, and nothing can be delivered! without the above regulation. The hills of lading and invoices have also to toe all stamped toy these officials. Then 20 per cent, of the invoice is withheld toy the British War Office until the goods reach destination and, have passed through a rigid1 examination and chemical analysis in France, which usually takes about four months after the goods are shipped from Canada, before we receive our pay.

That is>

the inspection that is carried on by the British Government officials of articles for army purposes. In addition to that, the officials of the Department of Agriculture carry on an inspection which is intended to cover all goods for export.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNION

Edward Walter Nesbitt

Unionist

Mr. NESBITT:

The reason I asked was that there was a gentleman here the other day who had a very interesting story to tell about some of these packing houses, and I think he is going to make it public some

of these days; it will certainly be interesting to the members and to the minister, and I have no donbt his story is correct. He was accusing the factories of putting up ' stuff that was not fit to pack.

Mr .CRERAR: I have not, as full an

acquaintance with, this inspection as I intend (to have when I am a little longer in the department. While the inspection is not as perfect as it would be if an inspector were located permanently in each factory to *inspect every ounce of vegetable entering into the manufacture of these foods, nevertheless I think it is sufficient to afford a pretty fair check on their quality.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
L LIB

Joseph Read

Laurier Liberal

Mr. JOSEPH READ:

Is the department taking any measures for inspecting small factories? There are quite a number of these small factories all over the Dominion, particularly in my province, putting up such foods as I mentioned a few minutes ago-" boiled dinners," which is a mixture of vegetables and meat, a well-balanced ration. These factories are up against very grave difficulties be1 cause they are not large enough to be entitled to an inspector. The Government provides that there must be an output of $50,000 or $60,000 worth of goods before an inspector will be appointed for the district. The result is that the small factories are put out of business by not being able to secure inspection. Has the Government received correspondence on that subject, and are they going to take measures to overcome that difficulty, and enable the small factories to compete with the big industry?

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

I will look into the point. I aim not aware that we have had any correspondence on the subject; I shall make inquiry concerning it. I want to point out, however, that this inspection does not govern in regard to goods consumed in the province where they are manufactured. It concerns only factories which are manufacturing goods for export, or interprovin-ciu.1 trade, and such factories, iif they are down in the province the hon. gentleman comes from, have the same facilities for inspection as other factories in other parts of the country.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink

Section agreed to. On Section 17-False marking as to name.


L LIB

Andrew Ross McMaster

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McMASTER:

Is there provision in the law for marking the true weight and contents of packages? Subsection 2 provides that no false information concerning the contents of a package should be given.

I notice on many packages coming from the United States, the words: "This package contains so many ounces," or so many pounds, " exclusive of the package." It seems to me perhaps a rather wise provision to insert, in order that the public may be protected and know that they get what they are paying for.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

Before replying directly to the question, I may say that the only change in this section is the provision that it shall apply to imports as well as exports. There is no provision, as far as I know, for marking on the label the exact weight of the contents of the can. The section merely provides that no package shall be marked with any label, brand or mark which will falsely represent the contents.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
L LIB

Isaac Ellis Pedlow

Laurier Liberal

Mr. PEDLOW:

Is it not the intention to apply the inspection to food for local consumption under the Act? I think it would be a wise provision.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

No. This Act is intended to apply to goods manufactured for export or interprovincial trade. The regulation as to the purity of the goods manufactured for local consumption is left to the municipal or provincial authorities', and they have charge of the enforcement of the Adulteration Act, which provides the necessary machinery for protection in the case the hon. gentleman refers to.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
L LIB

Joseph Read

Laurier Liberal

Mr. JOSEPH READ:

I think the hon. minister is perhaps not quite correct about The Meat Act applying to goods for provincial use. I think the three Maritime Provinces are included in one section. You cari export a carcass of pork which has not been inspected from one part of the Maritime Provinces to another, but you cannot export it to Quebec or Ontario.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

Thomas Alexander Crerar (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. CRERAR:

The hon. gentleman may be right, but I cannot say definitely.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNI L

John Flaws Reid

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. J. F. REID:

I wish to draw the hon. minister's attention to subsection 2, which reads:

(2) No package containing any article subject to inspection 'under tihis Act shall be marked with any label, brand or mark which falsely represents the quantity or weight or contents of such package.

In the West we get a very large quantity of canned tomatoes, and, as far as I know, they come very largely if not altogether from somewhere in Ontario. I do not believe we get any from Prince Edward Island. I have not noticed the stamp on the brand, but we certainly get a large quantity of water and a very small quan-

tity of tomatoes in these cans. I hope this measure will apply to canned tomatoes.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
UNION

Edgar Keith Spinney

Unionist

Mr. SPINNEY:

Is this Bill intended to cover all the fish products, as well as other food?

* Mr. CRERAR: I understand, under legislation passed last year or the year previous, that the same provision applies to fish products, but the administration of that part of the Act is under the Department of Marine and Fisheries.

Topic:   MEAT AND CANNED FOODS ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink

April 23, 1918