The tale of a Canadian army major and 40lbs of pork continues…….but has taken an uncomfortable twist.
What is a search warrant? We don’t have property rights enshrined in Canada’s Constitution, so that’s not it. A search warrant actually protects the privacy rights of citizens of this country – and that’s where Mark Tijssen’s story takes its nasty turn.
To back up a bit, in November 2009, Mark and a friend bought a live pig, brought it home and butchered it. When the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) was made aware of this, an incredible chain of investigative actions was set in motion that saw Tijssen charged with four counts under the Ontario Food Safety and Quality Act and Regulation 31/05 (Meat). By June of 2010, MNR made Tijssen an offer – plead guilty to all charges, and $100,000 in fines would be reduced to a paltry $1000. What a deal! Continue reading
Here’s a story from the Netherlands that may illuminate the conditions we’re headed for with the burgeoning proliferation of government regulations in Canada, regulations that affect not only milk, pigs and other food sources. This story is titled “Amstergasm” and is by S.G. Collins, from volume 5 of the ezine “Mental Shoes”:
My head is churning with conflicting ideas, as I walk into Chico’s bar on a cool evening in August. It’s unofficially opening night for the new bar. In a move none of us expected, the drummer and erstwhile sushi deliverer found his way to buy out a neglected business, and fix it up with the help of some friends. The scents of painting and cleaning still hang in the air. The bar looks great. Chico looks exhausted. But hopeful. A crowd of well-wishers surrounds him. None of my friends have arrived yet, so for a while I just sit there thinking about what it means to open a bar, in this town, in this time. Continue reading
Macleans magazine has picked up the story of the Ottawa-area man who was charged by the Ministry of Natural Resources for slaughtering a pig and sharing it with his friend. From the story by Tom Henheffer, Dec. 16, 2010:
As it appears on the Macleans website
Four squad cars squealed into Mark Tijssen’s yard with their lights blazing, just after dark on a cold November night last year. Tijssen, who was having dinner with his nine-year-old son at the time, politely showed the officers around his Ottawa property before being charged with several crimes under the Ontario Food Quality and Safety Act (OFQSA), including killing uninspected animals and distributing meat without a licence. It was all because he had slaughtered a pig and given a friend some of the meat. “I didn’t set out to be an activist or a revolutionary—I grew up on a farm,” says Tijssen, 48, a Canadian Forces major. “There was no need for this.” Continue reading
Raw milk farmer Michael Schmidt reports from Ottawa:
Mark Tijssen with Michael Schmidt in front of the Supreme Court building in Ottawa recently
A pig died for a worthwhile cause
It was not clear at the time of the pigs death what impact it would have at the political arena in Ottawa. Continue reading
Backyard chicken enthusiasts who are keen on experiencing the whole process have been signing up for a new kind of workshop. This excerpt is from an L. A. Times story titled “A Bloody Lesson for Backyard Chicken Enthusiasts“:
Instructor Jordan Dawdy, 33, helps Elizabeth Lameyer, 23, cut off a chicken's head at the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture's "Yard to Skillet" workshop in Columbia, Mo. The town began allowing urban residents to raise chickens in February. (Eva Dou, For The L. A. Times / September 25, 2010)
Reporting from Columbia, Mo. —
Fluffy, white broiler chickens pecked around the backyard while a group of two dozen people — a set of knives laid out before them — eyed them warily. Continue reading