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Chatham Man Fined under Food Safety and Quality Act

Court Bulletin

Chatham Man Fined under Food Safety and Quality Act

A Chatham man plead guilty and was fined $875 plus a victim fine surcharge of $125 for violating provincial food safety laws.

On January 25, 2017, Raymond Hart plead guilty at the Chatham-Kent Provincial Offences Court to one count of obstructing an inspector.  Obstructing an inspector in the performance of their duties is a violation of Subsection 15 (5) of the Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001

On August 3, 2016, an inspector appointed under the Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001, attended Dover Produce Co. in Chatham, Ontario. In accordance with Subsection 24(2) of the Act, the inspector requested of the operator, Mr. Hart, a sample of produce for testing purposes.  Mr. Hart refused to provide the sample. Mr. Hart was informed by the inspector that refusing to provide a sample could result in an obstruction charge. While Mr. Hart did acknowledge his understanding, he still refused to provide the sample.  The matter was referred to the Ministry's Agriculture Investigations Unit.

The investigation produced evidence of the inspector being obstructed by Mr. Hart who failed to cooperate and provide a sample of produce for testing purposes. Under the Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001, it is an offence to obstruct an inspector while they are performing their duties.  

The court ordered Mr. Hart to pay a fine of $875 plus a victim fine surcharge of $125 for a total of $1,000.

Help Us Enforce the Law

Anyone with information regarding potential violations of provincial food and inspection legislation is asked to contact the OMAFRA Regulatory Compliance Unit at (519) 826-4537 or toll-free at 1-888-466-2372 ext. 5198264537.

Quick Facts

  • Ontario is a leader in food safety. The province’s Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001 is part of Ontario’s food safety system and contains high standards for the protection of consumers.
  • The Ministry’s Food Safety Monitoring Program routinely collects samples from market vendors for microbial and heavy metal testing.
  • The Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001, allows inspectors to examine, test, analyse, take samples of or dispose of samples of any food, agricultural or aquatic commodity, agricultural input or other thing used in carrying on a regulated activity.
  • Penalties for an individual convicted of a provincial offence under this Act may include: a fine of up to $25,000 for a first conviction and up to $50,000 for each subsequent conviction (for each day or part of a day on which the offence occurs or continues); imprisonment for no more than two years; or both a fine and imprisonment as stated in s. 46 of the Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001.

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