A canning foods company located in Kingsville was fined $230,000 plus the 25% victim fine surcharge for two offences under the Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA) and one offence under the Environmental Protection Act (EPA).
On January 17, 2018 Sun-Brite Foods Inc. (“Sun-Brite”) pled guilty to discharging processed water into the Melville Bruner Drain extension in or around September 2015, failing to notify the Ministry of the Environmental and Climate Change (“MOECC”) of the discharge, and failing to meet the terms of its Amended Environmental Compliance Approval (“ECA”).
Sun-Brite operates a canning foods facility situated on County Road 34 in Kingsville, Ontario. The Sun-Brite facility, commonly known as the Ruthven facility, produces canned tomatoes, sauces, condiments, and beans, among others. Its brand names include Unico and Primo, and has a client list that includes Campbell’s and Heinz
The MOECC, in September 2015, when responding to odour complaints from the local residents, observed black-grey discharge that had a sulphur odour in the municipal drain located parallel to Highway 3. Sun-Brite confirmed at the time of the discharge that it was having issues with its wastewater treatment plant. Sun-Brite also failed to report the incident to the Spill Action Centre.
The MOECC took samples of the discharge which indicated that the discharge in the municipal drain was impaired and could possibly be toxic for Daphnia Magna and Trout.