Neustadt Farmer Fined under Animal Welfare Legislation
Philip Becker of Neustadt, Ontario was fined $1,500 for violating a provincial law that protects animals.
On April 4, 2017, Phillip Becker pleaded guilty in the Walkerton Provincial Offences Court to one charge of violation of Ontario Regulation 105/09 (Disposal of Deadstock) of the Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001. The regulation requires a fallen animal be killed or arranged to be killed, in a humane manner to prevent inhumane treatment of the animal, and to ensure that sick and diseased animals are not sold for consumption by the public.
On January 21, 2016, Mr. Becker shipped three cows to a provincially licensed auction market. One of the cows was suspected of being a fallen animal and was therefore segregated for veterinary inspection by the sales barn staff. A ministry-appointed Veterinary Inspector determined that the cow was severely dehydrated and weak. The inspector deemed the cow to be a fallen animal and the cow was promptly and humanely euthanized. The matter was referred to the Ministry's Agriculture Investigations Unit.
Throughout the investigation, Mr. Becker was highly cooperative and took responsibility for his role in the incident.
His Worship Justice of the Peace Phillips ordered Mr. Becker to pay a fine of $1,200 plus a Victim Fine Surcharge of $300 for a total of $1500, and stated in his remarks that it is important for farmers to know the health of their animals before transporting them.
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.
- OMAFRA is committed to a strong animal welfare system and supports industry in their development of scientifically informed codes of practice, humane handling and humane slaughter.
- The ministry also actively promotes animal welfare through research, education, inspection/enforcement activities and through industry collaboration.
- Ontario Regulation 105/09 (Disposal of Deadstock) under the Food Safety and Quality Act, 2001, governs the handling of fallen animals and the disposal of deadstock.
- Penalties for an individual convicted of a provincial offence under this Act and its regulations 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.
- Penalties for a corporation convicted of a provincial offence under this Act and its regulations may include: a fine of up to $100,000 for a first conviction and up to $200,000 for each subsequent conviction.