Following a huge number of meat recalls were issued across Canada over the past few months, three Toronto meat companies connected to the health alerts have lost their licenses.
A sprawling list of approximately 900 beef and veal products were recalled in Canada, including in B.C., ranging from beef burgers and tenderloin to veal ribs and flanks. The products had been distributed to institutions, restaurants, hotels, hospitals, grocery stores, and more across the country.
In September, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) launched a food-safety investigation into three Toronto meat companies when some products were found to be potentially contaminated with E. coli.
E. coli symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, headache, fever, severe stomach cramps, or watery or bloody diarrhea. Severe cases can require hospitalization and can be fatal.
During the investigation, the license for Ryding-Regency Meat Packers (which has been operating since 1983) was suspended on September 17, followed by the suspension of licenses for Canadian Select Meats (operating under St. Ann’s Foods), and the Beef Boutique (operating under St. Ann’s Foods) on September 21, for public safety.
All three companies were notified on October 22 that their licenses were being consideration for cancellation.
After the CFIA met with the license holders, the CFIA determined that the companies provided false or misleading information about E. coli lab results.
Consequently, the CFIA announced that it had revoked the Safe Food for Canadian licenses for all three companies on December 2.
As a result, these businesses will no longer be able to slaughter animals for food or prepare meat products for distribution in Canada or export.
The CFIA stated that it has concluded its investigation and no additional recalls related to the investigation are anticipated.