Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Responsibility for Canadian Food Inspection Agency Shifts to Health Canada

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Responsibility for Canadian Food Inspection Agency Shifts to Health Canada

Article excerpt

Health Canada takes over food safety agency

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OTTAWA - Responsibility for the agency that polices the safety of the country's food supply is moving to Health Canada from Agriculture.

The low-key reorganization will place responsibility for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency with the Health Department, alongside the Public Health Agency of Canada.

The government says the move will bring the three agencies responsible for various facets of food safety under a single minister.

It says the move will strengthen the whole food safety process.

The food inspection agency has handled a number of crises in recent years, including the deadly listeria outbreak in 2008 and the massive 2012 recall of contaminated beef from the XL Foods plant in Brooks, Alta.

Some of the agency's non-food activities, including economic and trade issues and some animal health and plant protection work, will remain with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. A news release says the CFIA will continue to support the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food in exercising these responsibilities.

In the release, the Conservative government says the move will bolster Canada's public safety system as a whole.

"This will ensure clear focus, easy collaboration and timely communication with Canadians when it comes to food safety," the news release said. …

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