Meat plant president charged under Meat Inspection Act

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SUMMERSIDE — The president of a meat-processing plant in Albany was fined $2,500 in provincial court Tuesday after pleading guilty to a charge under the federal Meat Inspection Act.

Prince County Courthouse.

Michael Joseph Nabuurs, president of Atlantic Beef Products Inc., was charged under section 14. (1), which states: no person shall obstruct or hinder, or make any false or misleading statement either orally or in writing to an inspector while the inspector is engaged in carrying out his duties or functions under this Act or the regulations.

An agreed statement of facts was detailed in court.

The incident happened on June 13, 2012, at the plant.

A Canadian Food Inspection Agency veterinarian was conducting a routine inspection when she observed an animal that was being unloaded from a truck limping and looked emaciated.

The veterinarian recommended to plant staff that the animal not go through the normal avenue for slaughter and be slaughtered in the barn area.

The plant’s hazard analysis and safety co-ordinator was brought in and, along with employees at the plant, disagreed with the inspector’s assessment.

That’s when Nabuurs told the veterinarian that slaughtering the animal in the barn was unnecessary, which prompted an argument that, at times, got heated and lasted several minutes.

The animal, despite the veterinarian’s recommendation, was slaughtered through the regular process. Afterwards, the inspector asked for the animal to be moved from that area. The carcass ended up not being condemned.

“Obviously the veterinarian was there to fulfill a purpose under the inspection act,” said Judge Jeff Lantz while sentencing Nabuurs. “(Nabuurs) was ignoring her directions. The consequences should be clear to him now.”

Lantz agreed with the joint sentence recommendation made by the Crown and defence, fining Nabuurs $2,500. He has 12 months to pay the amount.

 

Organizations: Atlantic Beef Products, Canadian Food Inspection Agency

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  • ILIKEFSH
    January 09, 2013 - 17:02

    This advertisment has been brought to you by your local chapter of "Buy Local".

  • don
    January 09, 2013 - 16:05

    FARMER. where does it say he resigned? and i agree where the beef is being sold needs to be checked. we do not want or need another plant like out west.

  • Billy
    January 09, 2013 - 11:05

    The animal was probably too full of potatoes. Hopefully, the inspectors are inspecting the local meat shops as well and let the consumer know which ones have problems .

  • animal lover
    January 09, 2013 - 07:23

    Maybe they should look into the reason that the animal was in that shape in the first place. Obviously it was mistreated and malnourished before it got to the meat plant. Someone has not been caring for these animals properly. Just because they are beef cattle, does not mean that they can or should be not cared for properly. What farm were they transported from, maybe the rest of the herd is limping and malnourished??

  • makes me sick
    January 09, 2013 - 06:33

    the REAL issue here is where did this animal come from that it "was limping and looked emaciated."?! Yes I realize it was being slaughtered for meat but why had been allowed to suffer become so frail before it was put out of its misery? The Vet should be investigating where this animal came from and then go inspect the farm and the farmer where it came from to ensure the remainder of the animals on that farm are being properly treated until the time of their death. This makes me sick.. that poor animal. Im a carnivore and I LOVE my beef, but I dont think its ok to allow an animal to become emaciated and in so much pain and malnourished that it is limping no matter what purpose that animal serves... I hope the farm this cow came from is investigated and charged if it warrants an animal abuse or neglect charge.

  • don
    January 09, 2013 - 01:01

    what a joke 12 months to pay considering he is getting more then a good wage from dizzy. he should be fired how many more times has this happened?

  • Stephanie
    January 08, 2013 - 20:22

    So even when the Inspector was on site this plant killed and processed an animal that may not have been fit to eat. What happens when there is nobody to regulate ? Another reason why you should know the farmer who raised the animals you eat!

  • Farmer
    January 08, 2013 - 20:07

    So that is why he resigned