Regulations Need Common Sense

SALE RESULTS

Here are the results from the Crowfoot Cattle Co. Red and Black Angus bull sale held at Standard, Alberta in early April.

The Auctioneer was Brent Carey, with DjH & Associates Ltd. as sale consultants.

Sale Results:

High Selling Black Bull

Lot 63 Crowfoot 8096U sired by Crowfoot 6071S was purchased by Hill 70 Quantock Ranch, Lloydminster, SK for $6,100.00.

High Selling Red Bull

Lot 9 Red XO Crowfoot 8817U sired by Red 5L Norseman King 2291 purchased by Speargrass Cattle Co., Bassano, AB for $4,300.00.

1 Mature Bull

15 Two-Year-Olds

63 Yearlings

79 Lots Grossed Averaged

Averaged

Averaged

$201,213 and Averaged

$3,500.00

$2,543.00

$2,533.00

$2,547.00

Andy Balogh of Pritchard, B. C. is a beef producer and on-farm meat processor who has fallen through a regulatory “crack” in that province that again confirms the point — regulations can have merit, but they need to be applied with common sense.

Balogh who raises beef cattle near Pritchard, just east of Kamloops, has been slaughtering and processing cattle in what was intended as more or less a retirement business. He had a nice little business going, processing about 30 head per year, which included about 10 head of his own and the rest for other local producers. He had a good facility that met all health and CFIA standards.

All was good until he got a letter a few months ago from the B. C. government that said as a small operator he could no longer slaughter cattle on his premises. He hadn’t applied in time, and now under new provincial regulations, his operation wasn’t licensed to slaughter and in fact there was a 100 kilometre protective zone established, which meant he couldn’t now qualify because there was another “approved” abattoir within 100 kilometres (km) of his farm. The next closest facility was 75 km away.

“I wasn’t aware that I had to apply for a permit to slaughter under these new regulations, otherwise I would have,” says Balogh. The end result is that he can still cut and wrap meat for people, but he can’t slaughter.

So now, anyone wanting to use his meat cutting and wrapping services (including himself) would have to have the animal slaughtered somewhere else and then brought to his farm for further processing. How handy is that?

Balogh says he’s not looking to become the Cargill of the B. C. Interior. He just wants to be able to process a few cattle of his own as well as for others in the local community. The other closest meat cutter has no issue with Balogh’s business, so it’s not a competitive issue that has to be dealt with. He missed an application deadline he didn’t know about, and now with the protective zone in place he’s hooped in a bid to provide a much-needed meat processing service in his community.

He is hoping there is some appeal or reconsideration process, but he’s not hopeful. Here are comments Balogh made in a recent letter to Cattleman’s Corner on the situation.

“Do B. C.’s new slaughter rules and regulations affect you?

The British Columbia government chose to provide legislation called the “B. C. Meat Inspection Regulations.” I thought the government’s job was to serve the people and protect us and the food we produce and consume.

This may be so, but the B. C. government chose to enact legislation that is protectionist to large slaughter facilities by not issuing transitional licenses for any new community facility within 100 km radius of a Class A or B facility. Rejection of our application is based strictly on this clause in their legislation.

The immediate community of Pritchard, B. C. saw the closure and demise of four fairly large community-based slaughter facilities when these new rules came into existence, thus leaving a large gap in the system for the service.

Is it feasible to truck livestock 100 km to a facility? What does it cost you to make two trips at least 400 km to try to get your livestock processed? Animal activists even agree that long distance trucking causes undue stress on livestock, let alone how it affects the quality of the meat after the animal has been stressed for a couple of days.

With today’s economy the way it is, farmers are trying just to survive, yet government, in B. C.’s case, is doing weird things to try to kill this industry and small operations

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