Agriculture ministers denounce food tampering as terrorism

Ryan Ross
Published on July 18, 2015

Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, left, and Prince Edward Island Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries Alan McIsaac chat after a press conference held at the Delta Hotel Friday. Federal, provincial and territorial agriculture ministers held their annual meeting in Charlottetown.

Federal, provincial, territorial agriculture ministers meeting in Charlottetown

When it comes to recent potato tampering, the P.E.I. and federal agriculture ministers are in agreement.

They both think it's food terrorism.

During a news conference after the country's agriculture ministers met in P.E.I. this week, Ritz fielded a question about food tampering and restoring consumer confidence.

"The great thing is Canadian consumers understand that these are despicable, deplorable acts," he said.

P.E.I. farmers have dealt with the brunt of recent potato tampering cases after metal objects were found in numerous places around Atlantic Canada.

Since then the provincial and federal governments have provided funding to help farmers buy metal detecting equipment to avoid any further incidents.

A $500,000 reward is also still in place for any information leading to the arrest of whoever is responsible for the tampering incidents.

Ritz called the perpetrators "scoundrels" and "food terrorists," saying he looked forward to seeing the full force of the law thrown at them.

In an interview after the news conference, P.E.I. Agriculture Minister Alan McIsaac called them despicable acts and said he agreed with Ritz.

"They are food terrorists."

McIsaac said the tampering is affecting the number one industry in P.E.I.'s agricultural economy.

"It's unacceptable."