Statement from Minister Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, on the impacts of border blockades on Canada’s supply chain

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OTTAWA, ON, Feb. 14, 2022 /CNW/ – “The border blockades across the country are affecting the safe movement of livestock, feed and goods and is adversely impacting Canada’s food supply chain. The disruptions have caused a threat to our economy and public safety and they are hurting farmers, small businesses and our communities across the country.

Today I sat down with meat industry representatives from across Canada to discuss the current situation and the impact of the border blockades on the transportation of live animals and beef exports, the movement of feed for livestock and the overall food supply for Canadians.

When I met with industry leaders, they told me that the blockade is having a significant impact on the livelihood of Canadian farm families and businesses who cannot sustain any more delays.

I also heard that shipments of animals are being delayed and cancelled, which is creating serious risks to animal welfare. We must ensure that animals, feed and ingredients can flow smoothly across the border. This is essential to support producers and protect the welfare of animals travelling between Canada and the U.S.

Border delays also heighten the risk of spoilage of perishable goods. Canadians should have confidence that our food supply is able to respond to demands and that our distribution system will continue to operate to meet the needs of Canadians. We need these blockades to end to avoid food loss and waste, as well as added costs for everyone in the supply chain including Canadian consumers. 

This evening, our Government invoked the Emergencies Act to help ensure these illegal blockades and activities come to an end. We are monitoring the situation closely and working with our federal and provincial partners to identify and mitigate disruptions.

I want to thank the vast majority of truckers who are on the job right now and have been doing the essential work of keeping our supply chains moving – each and every day. Canadians have stepped up to do the right thing, to protect the freedoms and the rights of Canadians to get back to the things we love to do.

Over the last two years, our supply chains have faced challenges that impacted all Canadians, including our agricultural producers and agri-food industry. Despite this, our farmers and producers across our country managed to bring healthy, nutritious, high-quality food to our kitchen tables every day.

While we respect the rights of all Canadians to protest, the unlawful occupation of major border crossings must end. Our hardworking truckers are essential to the function of our agriculture and food supply chains and to the efficiency of our economy.”

     –     The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

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