Sierra Club claiming conflict of interest at CropLife Canada

Media Release

June 19, 2014

OTTAWA – Sierra Club Canada Foundation has asked the Ethics Commissioner to examine the ruling under the Conflict of Interest Act with regard to Ted Menzies’ work with CropLife Canada.

“A cabinet minister went directly to the board room of CropLife, the pesticide industry’s lobbying arm,” said John Bennett, National Program Director, Sierra Club Canada Foundation.

“We are advised that this could constitute a conflict of interest under the Act and should be investigated,” he continued.

CropLife is in the midst of a major lobbying and public relations campaign to prevent Canada from adopting a ban on bee killing neonicotinoid pesticides; Action the European Union took more than a year ago.

Shortly after Mr. Menzies announced he was resigning his seat in Parliament, Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) announced it was extending consultation on neonicotinoids for at least two more years.

In February, despite conceding that neonicotinoids are unsustainable because they kill bees the PMRA allowed Syngenta’s Cruiser 5FS Seed to be used on-farms, allowing growers to apply the Group 4 seed treatment to wheat, barley, rye, triticale, buckwheat, millet, dry peas, chickpeas, lentils, lupins and fava bean seed; Thereby expanding the use of neonicotinoids.

“There is clearly something happening here,” said Mr. Bennett.

The complaint was drafted by Duff Conacher of Democracy Watch on behalf of the Sierra Club Canada Foundation.

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John Bennett, National Program Director
Sierra Club Canada Foundation
1510-1 Nicholas Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 7B7
Tel: 613-291-6888
John on Twitter / Bennett Blog