Thursday, 4 October 2012

The Food Safety Shell Game

Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-FoodThe Conservatives are treating Canada's food safety budget like a game of three-card monte but here is the straight goods on what is budgeted.  So fasten your seatbelts and keep your eye on the the cards.

The Conservatives recite repeatedly that the federal government has increased the food safety budget by $100 million.  Here's what they don't say about the Food Safety Budget:

  • The $100 million is a one-time cash infusion paid in installments over five years (18 million spent so far).  
  • Also the government sunset (i.e. cut) the listeria program that was $26 million.  For those playing at home that equates to negative 6 million for this year so far but I'm not done yet.
  • On May 18, 2012 the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food signed a report tabled to the House of Commons that states "Planned spending is declining by approximately $46.6 million and 314 [Full Time Equivalents]" A Full Time Equivalent is government speak for Full-Time Employees.
  • The current budget indicates the intention of another 56.1 million be cut annually over the next three years.

Okay so lets review:

 20 million (one-fifth of the 100 million "added")
-26 million (sunset Listeria Project)
-46.6 million (as per May 18 report)
Totalling  -52.6 million in 2012

 20 million (one-fifth of the 100 million "added")
-56.1 (projected budget cut)
=-36.1 x 3 years
Totalling -108.3 million for 2013-15

Less money is being spent on food safety this year and the plan is to continue reducing the amount.


  1. You're right. Passive aggressive. Always for the rich, like they're d owed. And the poor and middling in class. Like you are, owed. For nothing but being so very more Canadian. Do Liberals have the answer? More self righteousness. Who in Canada gets the wealth? Who makes the rule? Who does it belong to, to sell?

    Are you a commentary, or is there something to say? Oops, I mean kodoos for such a wonderful blog about your contempt. Oops, I did it again... And so much about nothing, I mean me of course. About my pension and cupla millions, and where does it go, government choices about who will vote what? Yes.

    The meat, and dairy and all those things, can't the people who make the stuff: make sure it's okay?

    1. Considering the scale of contamination in just this one plant. It would show that more government oversight is necessary to ensure our meat and dairy is safe.

    2. Okay. I see your point. In the real world, the food companies need to be monitored, not just regulated. If I got that right.

  2. I'm the wimp. Before I started reading your blog, I thought politicians were lawyers. But they are regular folk, with a lot of bad choices and little things they say to get around the truth.

    I comment to compliment your interest in telling us what you see.


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