MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - June 16, 2014) - Saputo Inc. (TSX:SAP) ("Saputo" or the "Company") announces it is not accepting milk from Chilliwack Cattle Sales and is leading push for strict reform. Since Saputo learned of the animal abuse at the farm in British Columbia (BC) from which horrific images of cattle mistreatment were captured, the Company has used its position as Canada's largest milk processor to ensure the situation is being addressed and that such reprehensible behaviour, which offends not only Saputo's values but also those of its consumers and customers, does not occur in the future.
The Company has reached out to the BC Minister of Agriculture, the BC Dairy Association, the BC Dairy Council and the BC Farm Industry Review Board.
Saputo has taken the lead in bringing industry stakeholders together behind a common goal: to ensure immediate consequences for those involved, and enforceable legal measures to prevent future animal abuse.
Saputo supports the recommendation of the BC Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) that the Canadian Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Dairy Cattle, published in 2009, be adopted into BC law.
To set the record straight, Saputo does not own or operate any dairy farms in British Columbia, or anywhere else in Canada. Like all dairy processors in Canada, Saputo is required by law to purchase milk from the provincial milk marketing boards. While we do not own the farms, we care deeply about the way the milk we sell is produced. We will not accept milk from the BC Milk Marketing Board supplied by this farm until we are fully satisfied that strict animal welfare practices are in place.
We always strive to do the right thing and our stewardship of the public's trust in our industry is something we take very seriously. The abuse brought to light in this case should be viewed as a catalyst for change to ensure the proper treatment of dairy cattle through appropriate, enforceable and legal measures including severe penalties for offenders.
Saputo produces, markets, and distributes a wide array of dairy products of the utmost quality, including cheese, fluid milk, extended shelf-life milk and cream products, cultured products and dairy ingredients. We are one of the top ten dairy processors in the world, the largest in Canada, the third in Argentina and the fourth in Australia. In the US, the Company ranks among the top three cheese producers and is one of the largest producers of extended shelf-life and cultured dairy products. Our products are sold in more than 40 countries under well-known brand names such as Saputo, Alexis de Portneuf, Armstrong, Baxter, Dairyland, Dragone, DuVillage 1860, Friendship, Frigo Cheese Heads, Great Midwest, King's Choice, Kingsey, La Paulina, Milk2Go, Neilson, Nutrilait, Ricrem, Salemville, Scotsburn, Stella, Sungold and Treasure Cave. Saputo Inc. is a publicly traded company whose shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "SAP".
Director, Corporate Communications