GN wants exemption from meat import ban


The Government of Nunavut is calling on Canada’s trading partners to make an exception for Nunavut’s country food products.

Most of Canada’s international trading partners, including the U.S. and Europe, have imposed a ban on the importation of all Canadian ruminant products and by-products, after a cow in Alberta tested positive for the dreaded mad cow disease.

Ruminant is a technical word for animals, such as cattle, sheep and goats, that feed themselves by eating or chewing grass and vegetation.

But caribou and muskox are included in the ruminant category, which means Nunavut country food products can’t be sold overseas until the ban is lifted

The ban mainly affects small, government-owned, meat plants such as Kivalliq Arctic Foods in Rankin Inlet and Kitikmeot Foods in Cambridge Bay, both of which are operated through the Nunavut Development Corp.

The GN says the import bans could cost $400,000 in export sales and threatens 20 jobs.

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