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No answer yet on meat rules
There are still no changes to provincial meat regulations and that has a local politician alarmed.
Rick Fairbairn, rural Lumby director, is questioning why the provincial government hasn’t provided details on possible amendments to slaughter rules.
“I had heard there would be something in the throne speech and there’s nothing in there,” he said.
“My concern is we will be running out of time before the provincial election in May. They will drop the writ in April which means we only have a month-a-half to get things in order.”
Agriculture Minister Norm Letnick stated Feb. 5 that he expects a decision on regulation changes will be announced within the next few weeks.
Despite no announcement yet, Patrick Nicol, Regional District of North Okanagan chairperson, insists he has confidence in Letnick to do the right thing.
“He’s been very forthright with us,” said Nicol.
“There’s no reason for him to go around the province (consulting with stakeholders) if there wasn’t an opportunity for change. I am forever hopeful.”
The number of North Okanagan producers has gone from 1,200 to 300 since meat processing regulations came into force in 2007.
RDNO has stated that the current rules have had a negative impact on families and the local economy.
The regional district’s Electoral Area Advisory Committee recently voted to write the provincial government and demand slaughter licences for North Okanagan farmers.