Maple Leaf Foods is Canada’s largest food processor, and as the name implies, it traces its history a long way with our neighbor to the north. It has always prided itself on its food safety procedures.
Last year, as was widely reported, more than 20 people all across Canada died from listeriosis traced to one of Maple Leaf’s processing plants in Toronto. A huge recall of Maple Leaf products was ordered. Recently, the company settled class action cases for a reported $27 million.
Perhaps Maple Leaf thought that put it all behind them. Hardly. A Thomson-Reuters article described how Maple Leaf considers itself well-placed in the current economic environment. The story is 11 paragraphs long. Five of the paragraphs tell the company’s story. Six of the paragraphs, including the lead paragraph and the final five, are concerned in whole or in part with the listeriosis outbreak, plus a new recall of frankfurters and hot dogs.
People have long memories. The article in today’s Wall Street Journal that peanut butter sales in the four weeks ending February 21 dropped 13.3% compared to the same period last year is just another indication of that.