Country 105

Country 105


Agriculture Report

Listerious Report Out Today

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Government insists document will not be edited.


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An investigator's report into how the government handled the listeriosis outbreak will be made public today.

Sheila Weatherill, who headed a probe into the crisis, gave her report yesterday to Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz.

And already, Weatherill is defending her independence.

She says she was able to conduct her six-month investigation independently and impartially, without any interference from politicians.

The investigation was shrouded in secrecy, including closed-door meetings with cabinet ministers and their top aides, senior bureaucrats, various experts, and industry and consumer groups.

But Prime Minister Stephen Harper's spokesperson Kory Teneycke says the document won't be edited or altered in any way before it is released.

22 people died and hundreds of others fell ill during the outbreak after eating contaminated deli meats linked to a Maple Leaf Foods plant in Toronto.

The report won't express findings of criminal or civil liability, but it will make recommendations on how to prevent similar outbreaks.

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There's a report federal inspectors failed to proper precautions and did not have the right equipment while investigating a swine-flu outbreak on a central Alberta pig farm.

The CBC says it obtained an internal report by Alberta Health Services that says two workers for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency subsequently got sick with the H1N1 virus.

Agency spokesperson Doctor Jim Clark admits the proper protocols and procedures were not fully observed.

The inspectors spent two hours on April 28th taking nasal and blood samples from pigs on a farm near Rocky Mountain House.

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Russia has lifted the last of its H-1-N-1 flu related import restrictions on Canadian pork.

The Russian government lifted its ban on pork from Ontario -- the last province to still face trade restrictions.

Federal Trade Minister Stockwell Day was recently in Russia where he asked the government to look at the scientific evidence in favour of lifting the restrictions.

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Livestock farmers could raise their profit margins by using straw based sow housing.

New research suggests a hog barn with slatted floors puts physical stress on the animals -- resulting in higher culling rates than the alternative straw based system.

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Producers now have a way to see how environmentally friendly their farms are.

Manitoba Zero Tillage and Agri-Food Canada have developed a software program which can accurately determine the amount of greenhouse gas emissions coming from a farm.

It's being called the "HOLOS'' green house calculator, and collects information such as size, management practices and commodities to formulate a farm's carbon footprint.

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The Grey Dufferin Community Pasture Farm is holding a Twilight meeting tomorrow.

It's being held on Southgate Road 12 and begins with a barbeque at 5 o'clock and a wagon tour at 6:30.

A number of guest speakers will also be on hand.

For more information -- call 923-3232.

 


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