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Canadian Embassy Asks FDA to Release Food Shipments on Weekends

OTTAWA, Ont. - The Canadian Embassy in Washington has written to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to request sufficient staff coverage at Canada-U.S. border crossings during peak evening and weekend shipping hours.


OTTAWA, Ont. – The Canadian Embassy in Washington has written to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to request sufficient staff coverage at Canada-U.S. border crossings during peak evening and weekend shipping hours.

Similar requests from the Province of Ontario and the Consul General (Buffalo) were recently made in support of Ontario carriers and their customers exporting product subject to FDA inspections, at the request of the Ontario Trucking Association (OTA).

OTA says it’s attempting to ensure that FDA has enough resources to provide weekend staff coverage to allow trucking companies and their customers to receive formal release of their shipments at the border on Saturdays and/or Sundays.

“This lack of coverage by FDA officials has created serious inefficiencies for Ontario based trucking fleets exporting FDA impacted product to the U.S. – particularly across the Port of Buffalo,” the OTA charges.

Following are some of the points raised by the OTA:

Unpredictability of carriers to deliver loads during weekends as well as on Monday mornings to locations in the Northeastern United States.

This unpredictability has created a diminishing U.S. consumer/consignee confidence in Canadian products and the ability for Canadian carriers to supply product in a timely manner, creating potential for increased sourcing from U.S. supplier and trucking companies.

Complete alteration of production and dispatch schedules for both Ontario exporters and the trucking companies moving product into the United States to meet the five-day per week FDA schedule.

This makes for highly inefficient use of capital and labour.

Trucks are not as productive as they could be with FDA weekend hours.

Purchasing, leasing or renting of properties in the U.S. by Canadian shippers/trucking companies to stage equipment for pick up by U.S. carriers for weekend and Monday deliveries is adding to the cost and making Canadian product less competitive.


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