Prairie processors get federal cash for COVID-related safety measures

Twenty-four meat processing operations across the Prairies used up to $7.8 million in federal funds to support their safety measures and investments related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jim Carr, special representative for the Prairies, said March 2 that the Emergency Processing Fund was designed to help protect meat plant employees from COVID-19 through various safety measures implemented by plant operators.

Operations had to apply for the funds, which were used for such things as installation of protective barriers between workers, purchase of personal protective equipment, improved sanitation and employee training.

“Our prairie meat businesses have shown incredible resilience throughout this time of crisis,” said Carr.

“The investments announced today are helping many local businesses adapt their operations to help protect the health and safety of their employees, which will allow them to continue supplying good food for Canadians.”

Sixteen companies in Alberta received funds through the program, along with three in Saskatchewan and five in Manitoba.

Among the three recipients in Alberta that received three-figure amounts were JBS Food Canada, which operates a beef slaughter plant in Brooks, Alta., at $804,912, Aliya Foods of Edmonton, $406,999 and Soleterra d’Italia of Acme, Alta., at $231,096. (See full list below.)

Recipients in Saskatchewan were Drake Meat Processors in Drake, ($49,500), Pineview All Natural Meats in Corman Park ($40,000) and Prairie Pride Natural Foods in Saskatoon ($14.175.)

In Manitoba, three of the five recipients were HyLife Ltd., which has three processing plants ($3.67 million); Winkler Meats ($1.447 million); and True North Foods ($320,000.)

As well, Olymel, headquartered in Quebec, will receive up to $1.6 million with a portion used to improve safety measures at its facilities in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

In Alberta, the projects include:

· Aliya’s Foods Limited – $406,999

· Bouvry Export Calgary Ltd. – $27,150

· Bry-Conn Developments Inc. – $16,576

· Canada Lamb Processors Ltd.- $22,404

· Cut-Rite Meats Ltd. – $71,432

· Forestburg Meat Processing Inc. – $137,271

· Harmony Beef Company Limited – $88,134

· Irvings Farm Fresh Ltd. – $44,250

· JBS Food Canada – $804,912

· Provost Packers Ltd. – $49,980

· Ryley Sausage (1991) Ltd. – $44,182

· Serben Farms – $14,500

· Soleterra d’Italia – $231,096

· Spolumbo’s Fine Foods & Deli – $69,472

· Trochu Meat Processors Ltd. – $63,287

· Viva Deli Inc. – $70,184

In Saskatchewan, the projects include:

· Drake Meat Processors Inc. – $49,500

· Pineview All Natural Meats Inc. – $40,000

· Prairie Pride Natural Foods Ltd. – $14,175

In Manitoba, the projects include:

· 6381023 Manitoba Ltd. – $320,000

· East 40 Packers Ltd. – $99,999

· HyLife Ltd. – $3,670,334

· Timothy’s Country Butcher Shop – $32,174

· Winkler Meats Ltd. – $1,447,693

Contact barb.glen@producer.com

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