VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Job cuts and possible rule changes in Canada’s food inspection system are raising concerns around the safety of food you buy in supermarkets.

Bob Jackson with the BC branch of the Public Service Alliance of Canada says more than 100 food inspectors will be fired nation-wide.
He says proposed changes by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency could also see food label inspectors cut, the people who make sure what’s said on a food label is true.

“And this helps people that have conditions such as diabetes and other conditions where it’s essential that they have very accurate information on the label of the food product that they’re going to consume,” he says.  “They need to know what’s in there.”

Jackson thinks supermarkets will be caught in the middle since many don’t make the food they’re selling.

But John Scott with the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers insists the food you buy in stores is safe even with food inspectors being fired, and says supermarkets follow food safety rules to a tee.

“There is a tremendous amount of food safety inspections going in the stores and at the plants,” Scott says.  
“The Canadian food system is among the safest in the world, and consumers should be very confident in that and I think you’ll find regardless of who you talk to through the chain that that’ll be a consistent message.”

Scott says food safety is an investment, not an extra cost.

“If there are cuts in inspectors, I will guarantee you that each company involved is going to be even more diligent in ensuring the quality of their product.”