The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says that the two largest poultry exporters in British Columbia faked salmonella tests on chicken bound for South Africa.
Superior Poultry Processors Ltd. of Coquitlam and Hallmark Poultry Processors Ltd. of Vancouver have been fined $100,000 on four counts of violating the Meat Inspection Act.
Export sales manager Bruce Arabsky has plead guilty to submitting 31 falsified certificates of analysis between April 10, 2003, and Jan. 25, 2005 for poultry being exported to South Africa. Arabsky has been responsible for all exports of poultry products by Superior and Hallmark since 1992. He is also a director of the Canadian Poultry and Egg Processors Council and served as a spokesperson for the B.C. poultry processing industry during a 2004 bird flu outbreak that forced a widespread slaughter of chickens and saw some countries impose temporary bans on imports of Canadian birds.
The certificates, which are required by the CFIA before exports are authorized, falsely stated that the poultry products had been tested for salmonella enteriditis and salmonella typhimurium.
The fakery was discovered when a CFIAS inspector checked with the laboratory listed on the certificates and was told it has performed no such tests since 2002.