HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 3, 2012) - Canadians will benefit from a strengthened food safety system from gate to plate with support from the Harper Government's Growing Forward. Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and MP for Central Nova, on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, announced today an investment for the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) that will further strengthen its food safety program, as members met for their general meeting in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
"Canadian farmers produce safe, high-quality food, and our trucking industry ensures these products are enjoyed on tables here at home and around the world," said Minister MacKay. "This Growing Forward investment will enable the Canadian Trucking Alliance to stay on the cutting edge of safe food handling practices and is a great example of the kind of strategic initiatives that Growing Forward 2 will support in the years to come."
This investment of over $415,000 will help the CTA update its existing Trucking Food Safety Program to include the latest food safety standards, regulations, and practices. This involves adding a new audit and certification process and creating a user-friendly online system that carriers can operate more easily.
These improvements will reduce the risk of food contamination beyond the farm gate and give food processors, distributors, and retailers more confidence that their products are handled properly during transportation. A strong food safety system also reassures Canadians of the safety of their food, which in turn helps to boost the bottom lines of farmers.
"Just about every food and beverage consumed by Canadians is carried on a truck at some point," noted CTA Chief Executive Officer David Bradley. "The Alliance is proud of its Trucking Food Safety Program, but we know it can be made even better through improvements such as automation and enhanced audit protocols. This would not be possible without the financing provided by the Growing Forward program and is a good example of government and industry collaborating to enhance food safety transportation in Canada."
This Growing Forward investment, made through the Canadian Integrated Food Safety Initiative, reinforces why federal, provincial, and territorial governments agreed to focus 50% more funding on cost-shared strategic initiatives in Growing Forward 2. The Harper Government is helping organizations develop national, government-recognized on-farm and/or post-farm HACCP or HACCP-based food safety systems. To find out more about this initiative, please visit www.agr.gc.ca/cifsi.