Law:Meat Inspection Act

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R.s.c., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.)

An Act respecting the import and export of and interprovincial trade in meat products, the registration of establishments, the inspection of animals and meat products in registered establishments and the standards for those establishments and for animals slaughtered and meat products prepared in those establishments

(1985, c. 17, assented to 16th May, 1985)

Contents

Short Title

Short title

1. This Act may be cited as the Meat Inspection Act.


Interpretation

Definitions

2. (1) In this Act,

“advertise”

« publicité »

“advertise” includes the making of a representation by any means whatever for the purpose of promoting, directly or indirectly, the sale or disposal of a meat product;

“analyst”

« analyste »

“analyst” means a person designated as an analyst pursuant to subsection 12(1);

“animal”

« animal »

“animal” means any animal in the class of mammals or birds and includes any other animal that is prescribed for the purposes of this Act or that falls within a class of animals prescribed for those purposes;

“carcass”

« carcasse »

“carcass” means the body of a dead animal;

“establishment”

« établissement »

“establishment” means any place in which animals are slaughtered or meat products are prepared, packaged, labelled or stored;

“inspector”

« inspecteur »

“inspector” means a person designated as an inspector pursuant to subsection 12(1) or (1.1);

“label”

« étiquette »

“label” includes any legend, word, mark, symbol, design, imprint, stamp, brand, ticket or tag or any combination thereof that is or is to be applied or attached to or included in, or that accompanies or is to accompany, any meat product, package or animal;

“meat inspection legend”

« estampille »

“meat inspection legend” means any prescribed meat inspection legend;

“meat product”

« produit de viande »

“meat product” means

(a) a carcass,

(b) the blood of an animal or a product or by-product of a carcass, or

(c) a product containing anything described in paragraph (b);

“Minister”

pan class=« ministre »

“Minister” means the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food;

“package”

« emballage »

“package” means an inner or outer receptacle or covering used or to be used in connection with a meat product;

“penalty”

« sanction »

“penalty” means an administrative monetary penalty imposed under the Agriculture and Agri-Food Administrative Monetary Penalties Act for a violation;

“person”

« personne »

“person” includes any individual, corporation, partnership or organization;

“prescribed”

Version anglaise seulement“prescribed” means prescribed by the regulations;

“registered establishment”

« établissement agréé »

“registered establishment” means an establishment registered in accordance with the regulations;

“sell”

« vente »

“sell” includes

(a) to agree to sell,

(b) to offer, keep, expose, transmit, send, convey or deliver for sale,

(c) to exchange or agree to exchange, and

(d) to dispose of, or agree to dispose of, to any person in any manner for a consideration;

“Tribunal”

« Commission »

“Tribunal” means the Review Tribunal continued by subsection 4.1(1) of the Canada Agricultural Products Act;

“violation”

« violation »

“violation” means any contravention of this Act or the regulations that may be proceeded with in accordance with the Agriculture and Agri-Food Administrative Monetary Penalties Act.

Binding on Her Majesty

(2) This Act is binding on Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 2; 1994, c. 38, s. 25; 1995, c. 40, s. 64; 1997, c. 6, s. 72; 2005, c. 38, s. 121.

Previous Version

Registered Establishment

Registered establishment

3. (1) It shall be a condition of the registration and operation of an establishment as a registered establishment that the establishment and all animals and meat products in it are subject to this Act and the regulations.

Operator’s licence

(2) No person shall operate a registered establishment unless that person has obtained a licence therefor in accordance with the regulations.


National Trade-mark

Meat inspection legend

4. The meat inspection legend shall be a national trade-mark, and the exclusive property in and, subject to this Act, the right to the use of that trade-mark is hereby declared to be vested in Her Majesty in right of Canada.

Authorized use

5. No person shall, unless authorized by the regulations,

(a) apply or use the meat inspection legend; or

(b) advertise or sell or have in his possession for any such purpose anything to which the meat inspection legend is applied or in connection with which the meat inspection legend is used.

Use of similar legend prohibited

6. No person shall

(a) apply or use any legend, word, mark, symbol or design or any combination thereof that so closely resembles the meat inspection legend as to be likely to be mistaken for it; or

(b) advertise or sell or have in his possession for any such purpose anything to which there is applied or in connection with which there is used any legend, word, mark, symbol or design or any combination thereof that so closely resembles the meat inspection legend as to be likely to be mistaken for it.


Trade In Meat Products

Export

7. No person shall export a meat product out of Canada unless

(a) it was prepared or stored in a registered establishment that was operated in accordance with this Act and the regulations;

(b) that person provides an inspector with evidence satisfactory to the Minister that the meat product meets the requirements of the country to which it is being exported; and

(c) that person obtains a certificate from an inspector authorizing the export of that meat product.

Interprovincial trade

8. No person shall send or convey a meat product from one province to another unless

(a) it was prepared or stored in a registered establishment that was operated in accordance with this Act and the regulations; and

(b) it complies with prescribed standards and is packaged and labelled in the manner prescribed.

Import

9. (1) No person shall import a meat product into Canada unless

(a) at the time it was prepared for export, the country from which it originated and any country in which it was processed had meat inspection systems, those systems and the relevant establishments in those countries were approved in writing by the Minister before that time and the approvals were valid at that time;

(b) that person provides an inspector with evidence satisfactory to the Minister that it meets the prescribed standards for imported meat products;

(c) it meets the prescribed standards for imported meat products; and

(d) it is packaged and labelled in the manner prescribed.

Delivery for inspection

(2) Every person who imports a meat product into Canada shall, as soon as possible, deliver it, in its imported condition, to a registered establishment for inspection by an inspector.

Compliance with requirements and standards

(3) No person shall have in his possession an imported meat product that the person knows

(a) has been imported into Canada in contravention of subsection (1); or

(b) has not been delivered to a registered establishment for inspection as required by subsection (2).

Advertising, sale and possession of imported meat products

10. (1) No person shall advertise or sell or have in his possession for any such purpose an imported meat product that

(a) has been imported into Canada in contravention of subsection 9(1); or

(b) has not been delivered to a registered establishment for inspection as required by subsection 9(2).

Advertising, sale and possession of other meat products

(2) No person shall advertise or sell or have in his possession for any such purpose a meat product

(a) that has been sent or conveyed from one province to another, or

(b) to which the meat inspection legend has been applied or in connection with which the meat inspection legend has been used,

unless the meat product complies with prescribed standards and is packaged and labelled in the manner prescribed.

Presumption of prohibited possession

11. (1) In any proceedings for a violation or for an offence under paragraph 5(b) or 6(b) or section 10, an accused found in possession of a meat product that did not comply with any provision of this Act or the regulations shall be deemed, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, to have had possession of the meat product for the purpose of advertising or selling it.

Exception

(2) The presumption under subsection (1) does not apply to a person in possession of a meat product for the person’s own consumption.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 11; 1995, c. 40, s. 65.


Enforcement

Designation of inspectors

12. (1) The President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency may designate under section 13 of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency Act the inspectors and analysts for the purposes of this Act.

Designation

(1.1) The President of the Canada Border Services Agency may designate inspectors under paragraph 9(2)(b) of the Canada Border Services Agency Act for the purposes of enforcing this Act.

Certificate to be produced

(2) Inspectors shall be given certificates in a form established by the President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency or the President of the Canada Border Services Agency, as the case may be, attesting to their designation and, on entering any place or vehicle referred to in subsection 13(1), an inspector shall, if so required, produce the certificate to the person in charge of that place or vehicle.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 12; 1997, c. 6, s. 73; 2005, c. 38, s. 122.

Previous VersionPowers of inspectors

13. (1) For the purposes of this Act and the regulations, an inspector may, subject to subsections (3) to (5), at any time enter any place or stop and enter any vehicle in which the inspector believes on reasonable grounds there is any meat product or other thing to which this Act applies and may

(a) open any package that the inspector believes on reasonable grounds does not comply with this Act or the regulations;

(b) inspect and take samples of any meat product or other thing that the inspector believes on reasonable grounds does not comply with this Act or the regulations; and

(c) require any person to produce for inspection, or for the purpose of obtaining copies or extracts, any book, shipping bill, bill of lading or other document or record that the inspector believes on reasonable grounds contains any information relevant to the administration or enforcement of this Act or the regulations.

Assistance to inspectors

(2) The owner or person in charge of a place or vehicle referred to in subsection (1) and every person found in that place or vehicle shall give the inspector all reasonable assistance to enable the inspector to carry out his duties and functions under this Act and shall furnish the inspector with any information the inspector may reasonably require with respect to the administration or enforcement of this Act and the regulations.

Warrant required to enter dwelling-house

(3) Where any place referred to in subsection (1) is a dwelling-house, an inspector may not enter that dwelling-house without the consent of the occupant except under the authority of a warrant issued under subsection (4).

Authority to issue warrant

(4) Where on ex parte application a justice of the peace is satisfied by information on oath

(a) that the conditions for entry described in subsection (1) exist in relation to a dwelling-house,

(b) that entry to the dwelling-house is necessary for any purpose relating to the administration or enforcement of this Act, and

(c) that entry to the dwelling-house has been refused or that there are reasonable grounds for believing that entry thereto will be refused,

the justice of the peace may issue a warrant under his hand authorizing the inspector named therein to enter that dwelling-house subject to such conditions as may be specified in the warrant.

Use of force

(5) In executing a warrant issued under subsection (4), the inspector named therein shall not use force unless the inspector is accompanied by a peace officer and the use of force has been specifically authorized in the warrant.

Obstruction and false statements

14. (1) 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.

Interference

(2) Except with the authority of an inspector, no person shall remove, alter or interfere in any way with anything seized or detained under this Act by an inspector.

Seizure

15. (1) Where an inspector believes on reasonable grounds that this Act or the regulations have been contravened, the inspector may seize and detain any meat product or other thing by means of or in relation to which the inspector believes on reasonable grounds the contravention was committed.

Storage and removal

(2) Any meat product or other thing seized and detained pursuant to subsection (1) may be stored by an inspector or any person designated by the inspector in the place where it was seized or may, at the inspector’s discretion, be removed to any other place for storage.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 15; 1995, c. 40, s. 66(F).

Detention

16. (1) Any meat product or other thing seized and detained pursuant to section 15 shall not be detained after

(a) the provisions of this Act and the regulations have, in the opinion of the inspector, been complied with, or

(b) the expiration of ninety days from the day of seizure or such longer period as may be prescribed with respect to the meat product or other thing,

unless before that time proceedings have been instituted in respect of a violation, or in respect of an offence under this Act, in relation to the meat product or other thing seized, in which case it may be detained until the proceedings are finally concluded.

Application for return

(2) Where proceedings referred to in subsection (1) have been instituted, the owner, or person in possession at the time of seizure, of anything that is the subject-matter of the proceedings, other than a meat product or anything bearing the meat inspection legend, may, subject to subsection 17(3), apply

(a) in the case of a violation, to the Tribunal, or

(b) in the case of an offence, to the court before which the proceedings are being held,

for an order that it be returned.

Order for return

(3) Where, on an application pursuant to subsection (2), the Tribunal or court is satisfied that sufficient evidence exists or may reasonably be obtained without detaining the thing that is the subject-matter of the proceedings, the Tribunal or court may order it to be returned to the applicant, subject to any condition the Tribunal or court may impose to ensure that it is preserved for any purpose for which it may subsequently be required.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 16; 1995, c. 40, s. 67.

Forfeiture

17. (1) Where the Tribunal decides that a person has committed a violation, or a person is convicted of an offence under this Act, the Tribunal or the convicting court or judge, as the case may be, may, in addition to any penalty or punishment imposed, order that any meat product or other thing by means of or in relation to which the violation or offence was committed be forfeited to Her Majesty in right of Canada, and on the making of the order the meat product or other thing may be disposed of as the Minister may direct.

Tribunal or court to consider forfeiture

(2) Where no party raises the question of forfeiture under subsection (1), the Tribunal or court shall consider the question on its own motion.

Forfeiture on consent

(3) Where the owner of a meat product or other thing seized under this Act or the person in possession of it at the time of seizure consents to its disposal, it is thereupon forfeited to Her Majesty in right of Canada and may be disposed of, as the Minister may direct, at the expense of the person consenting to the disposal.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 17; 1995, c. 40, s. 68.

Non-complying import — notice for removal

18. (1) Where an inspector believes on reasonable grounds that any meat product is being or has been imported into Canada in contravention of this Act or the regulations, the inspector may, whether or not the inspector seizes the meat product pursuant to section 15, require the importer to remove it from Canada by giving the importer a notice for its removal delivered to the importer personally or sent by registered mail to the importer’s business address in Canada.

Forfeiture and disposal

(2) Where any meat product is not removed from Canada within a period of ninety days after a notice for its removal was delivered or sent to the importer under subsection (1), or within such longer period after the delivery or sending of the notice as may be authorized by the Minister, it shall, notwithstanding section 16, be forfeited to Her Majesty in right of Canada and may be disposed of, as the Minister may direct, at the expense of the importer.

Evidence of financial responsibility

19. The Minister may require any person or class of persons importing meat products into Canada to provide evidence of financial responsibility in any form, including an insurance or indemnity bond, or a suretyship, that is satisfactory to the Minister.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 19; 2001, c. 4, s. 99.


Regulations

Regulations

20. The Governor in Council may make regulations for carrying out the purposes and provisions of this Act and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, may make regulations

(a) prescribing the meat inspection legend and the form and manner in which, terms and conditions on which, persons by whom and things in connection with which it may be applied or used;

(b) governing the registration of establishments and the licensing of the operators thereof, and prescribing the fees payable therefor;

(c) providing for the cancellation and suspension of the registration of registered establishments;

(d) governing the design, construction and maintenance of registered establishments and of the equipment and facilities therein;

(e) respecting the operation and suspension of operation of registered establishments;

(f) prescribing the equipment and facilities to be used, the procedures to be followed and the standards to be maintained in registered establishments to ensure humane treatment and slaughter of animals and hygienic processing and handling of meat products;

(g) providing for the inspection of establishments and registered establishments and the animals and meat products in registered establishments and prescribing the fees payable therefor;

(h) providing for the reinspection of meat products in connection with which the meat inspection legend is applied or used and prescribing the fees payable therefor;

(i) prescribing standards for meat products that are prepared or stored in registered establishments, for meat products that enter into interprovincial or international trade and for meat products in connection with which the meat inspection legend is applied or used;

(j) prescribing standards for imported meat products;

(k) governing the packaging and labelling of meat products and prescribing the specifications for the packages and labels;

(l) respecting the withholding from slaughter of animals and the inspection, holding, treatment, condemnation, confiscation and disposal of animals, meat products or other things in registered establishments that are or are suspected on reasonable grounds of being injurious to health or otherwise in contravention of this Act or the regulations;

(m) respecting the inspection and disposal of imported meat products and prescribing the fees payable for such inspection;

(n) providing for systems for ascertaining the places of origin of the animals to be slaughtered in registered establishments;

(o) prescribing the manner of seizing and detaining anything under this Act and providing for the safe-keeping and disposal of anything seized, detained or forfeited under this Act;

(p) respecting the storage, handling and transportation of meat products and the payment of expenses in connection with that storage;

(q) prohibiting the transportation of meat products unless they are properly packaged and labelled under this Act and the regulations and evidence satisfactory to the Minister is provided that they meet any other requirements of this Act and the regulations;

(r) exempting any person, establishment, registered establishment, animal, meat product or any class thereof from the application of this Act or the regulations or any provisions thereof, subject to such terms and conditins as the Governor in Council considers appropriate; and

(s) prescribing anything that by this Act is to be prescribed.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 20; 1993, c. 44, s. 184.

20.1 (Repealed, 1993, c. 44, s. 185)


Offences And Punishment

Contravention of paragraph 5(b) or 6(b)

21. (1) Every person who contravenes paragraph 5(b) or 6(b) by selling anything contrary thereto is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to a fine not exceeding $250,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or to both.

Contravention of section 7, 8 or 10

(2) Every person who contravenes section 7 or 8 or who contravenes section 10 by selling any meat product contrary to subsection (1) or (2) thereof

(a) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to punishment as described in subsection (1); or

(b) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to punishment as described in subsection (4).

Contravention of subsection 13(2) or regulations

(3) Every person who contravenes or fails to comply with subsection 13(2) or the regulations is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding $50,000 thousand dollars.

General offence

(4) Subject to subsections (1) to (3), every person who contravenes any provision of this Act is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding $50,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to both.

Limitation period

(5) A prosecution for a summary conviction offence under this Act may be instituted at any time within two years after the time when the subject-matter of the prosecution becomes known to the Minister.

Minister’s certificate

(6) A document purporting to have been issued by the Minister, certifying the day on which the subject-matter of any prosecution became known to the Minister, is admissible in evidence without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed the document and is evidence of the matters asserted in it.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 21; 1995, c. 40, s. 69; 1997, c. 6, s. 74.

Imprisonment precluded in certain cases

22. (1) Where a person is convicted of an offence under subsection 21(3), imprisonment shall not be imposed as punishment for the offence or in default of payment of the fine imposed as punishment.

Recovery of fines

(2) Where a person is convicted of an offence under this Act and a fine imposed as punishment is not paid when required, the prosecutor may, by filing the conviction, enter as a judgment the amount of the fine and costs, if any, in the superior court of the province in which the trial was held, and the judgment is enforceable against the person in the same manner as if it were a judgment rendered against the person in that court in civil proceedings.

Offence by employee or agent

23. In any prosecution for an offence under this Act, it is sufficient proof of the offence to establish that it was committed by an employee or agent of the accused whether or not the employee or agent is identified or has been prosecuted for the offence, unless the accused establishes that the offence was committed without the knowledge or consent of the accused and that the accused exercised all due diligence to prevent its commission.

Officers, etc., of corporation

24. Where a corporation commits an offence under this Act, any officer, director or agent of the corporation who directed, authorized, assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the commission of the offence is a party to and guilty of the offence and is liable on conviction to the punishment provided for the offence whether or not the corporation has been prosecuted or convicted.

Venue

25. A prosecution for an offence under this Act may be instituted, carried on, heard and determined in the place where the offence was committed or the subject-matter of the prosecution arose, where the accused was apprehended or where the accused happens to be or is carrying on business.

Certificate of analyst or report of inspector

26. (1) In any proceedings for a violation, or for an offence under this Act, a certificate of an analyst or a report of an inspector purporting to have been signed by the analyst or inspector and stating the results of the analysis or inspection is admissible in evidence without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed the certificate or report and, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, is proof of the matters asserted in the certificate or report.

Copies or extracts

(2) In any proceedings for a violation, or for an offence under this Act, a copy of or an extract from any book, record or document made by an inspector pursuant to paragraph 13(1)(c) and appearing to have been certified under the inspector’s signature as a true copy or extract is admissible in evidence without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed the copy or extract and, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, has the same probative force as the original would have if it were proved in the ordinary way.

Notice

(3) No certificate, report, copy or extract referred to in this section shall be received in evidence unless the party intending to produce it has, before the trial, served on the party against whom it is intended to be produced reasonable notice of that intention together with a duplicate of the certificate, report, copy or extract.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 26; 1995, c. 40, s. 70.

Evidence of identification

27. In any proceedings for a violation, or for an offence under this Act, proof that a meat product, package or label bore

(a) a name and address purporting to be that of the person who prepared, packaged or labelled it, or

(b) a registered number or registered brand mark purporting to be that of the establishment where it was prepared, packaged or labelled,

is proof, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, that the meat product was prepared, packaged or labelled by the person or at the establishment whose name, address, registered number or registered brand mark appeared on the meat product, package or label.

R.S., 1985, c. 25 (1st Supp.), s. 27; 1995, c. 40, s. 71.


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