MP Alex Atamanenko and CHDC Submit Order Paper Questioning Government

parliament pageIn an attempt to clarify and understand the Government’s position on the business of horse slaughter, on behalf of the CHDC, MP Alex Atamanenko submitted these Order Paper Questions which were entered into the parliamentary publications on November 26, 2013 (Q-20).  Click here and scroll down for Q-20.

MP Atamanenko is responsible for tabling Canada’s Bill – 322, An Act to Amend the Health of Animals Act and the Meat Inspection Act (Slaughter of Horses for Human Consumption).

Order Paper Questions may be submitted by Members of Parliament on specific days and are formally presented by an MP.  Once submitted, the questions are entered into the parliamentary journals.   If the MP designates that a response from the Government is required in writing the Government has 45 days to respond.  Failure of the Government to respond within this time frame is automatically referred to a Standing Committee.   Further information on Order Paper Questions can be found on the Government of Canada’s web site here.

With regard to the horse slaughter industry in Canada:

(a) what was the reason for the temporary halt, initiated by European Union (EU) officials, to horse meat imports from Canada on October 12, 2012;

(b) has Canada participated in talks with EU officials regarding the safety of horse meat from Canada since that time,

(i) if so, what topics were discussed,

(ii) what conclusions were reached;

(c) what restrictions effective in 2013 will be imposed upon the Canadian horse meat industry by the EU,

(i) what is the anticipated impact of these restrictions on the frequency and type of drug residue testing on horse meat in Canada as well as on the data required on Equine Information Documents (EIDs),

(ii) will the restrictions on prohibited/non-permitted drugs be further tightened;

(d) is there any oversight by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) on transport drivers and horse meat dealers listed on EIDs as current owners to check for a history of violations of the United States Department of Agriculture, Ministry of Transport, or CFIA transport regulations,

(i) does the CFIA enhance its scrutiny of such violators or conduct follow-up investigations on those who have been flagged for violations,

(ii) is this information shared with any other inter-connected government agency either in Canada or in the United States; (e) how often do CFIA inspectors do a visual inspection of the transports that arrive at the slaughter plants to ensure that the horses have been transported safely;

(f) how many transport violations concerning horse slaughter transportation have been issued to transport drivers within the last five years,

(i) how many warnings of violations have been issued,

(ii) if the warnings have been ignored, how does the CFIA restrict or prohibit those transport drivers from conducting business in Canada;

(g) how often does the CFIA conduct inspections of feedlots and how many warnings or violations were imposed in the last five years because of these inspections;

(h) in the last five years, how many times has the CFIA conducted audits of processes and procedures regarding the export shipments of live horses to foreign countries,

(i) how many audit reports were prepared,

(ii) how many warnings were issued to shippers;

(i) how does the CFIA ensure that e-coli or the potential for e-coli is properly erased from horses and horse meat during and after the slaughter process;

(j) how often are in-house video cameras scrutinized in plants and does the CFIA keep these videos to scrutinize at a later date, and how does the CFIA  address inappropriate behaviour by slaughter plant personnel that may be uncovered in video recordings;

(k) after conditions at Les Viandes de la Petite-Nation were revealed in 2011, were structural changes instituted at that slaughter facility and, if so, which ones, and were changes concerning the safe use of a rifle rather than captive bolt gun instituted and, if so, did the CFIA see a reduction in the number of horses regaining consciousness after switching from captive bolt gun to rifle;

(l) what accountability measures are taken towards recorded owners of horses whose carcasses were condemned for reasons of disease, malnourishment or other abuse;

(m) are the carcasses of horses that test positive for prohibited drugs used for rendering, and if not, how does the CFIA oversee the safe disposal of contaminated carcasses and ensure that condemned carcasses are not combined in any way with normal rendering;

(n) how often does the CFIA inspect slaughter house feedlots and out buildings for dead or downer horses,

(i) are there any reports kept by plant personnel regarding dead or downer horses,

(ii)  if so, does the CFIA inspect these reports at any time,

(iii) how many dead or downer horses have been involved since January 1, 2010, and what were the circumstances surrounding these cases;

(o) what protocols are in place to ensure that equine blood and other body fluids are being properly diverted from municipal town water systems;

(p) does the CFIA conduct audits or oversee EIDs when obvious erroneous information is listed by the recorded owner and is the slaughter plant required to flag these EIDs for scrutiny by the CFIA when there are obvious or deliberate errors or omissions;

(q) what do slaughterhouses do with registration papers that may accompany thoroughbreds, standardbreds, quarter horses or other breeds to slaughter facilities;

(r) does the CFIA compile statistics on breeds that are most likely to have been administered prohibited drugs;

(s) what are the “animal well-being program” and “program to monitor animal slaughter” mentioned in the response to written question Q-714 on September 17, 2012, and what results have been seen from the use of these programs;

(t) are horse slaughter facilities checking with ID scanners for microchips,

(i) if not, does the CFIA plan to implement a microchip ID program and if so, when is the deadline for its implementation;

(u) has a database been developed for Equine Information Documents and who is responsible for oversight and maintenance of the database; and (v) how many horse fatalities and serious injuries have occurred during loading or air transport of slaughter horses to Japan and any other countries, between January 1, 2008, and April 1, 2013,

(i) what reasons were recorded for the fatalities or injuries,

(ii) how was each case resolved?


  1. Dennis Davey · ·

    Unfortunately this Conservative DICTATORSHIP incorrectly beleives it is not accountable to the PUBLIC or Parliamentry protocol. That being said many of us look forward to Govt. response as it relates to time parameters and MP Atamanenko questions.

  2. jean robertson · ·

    If only Mr. Atamanenko could become Prime Minister. Just think how great our government would be.

%d bloggers like this: