Canadian Packaging

Update on Maple Leaf Foods class action settlement

Listeria victims still not reimbursed despite Maple Leaf Foods paying out three years ago.


December 15, 2011
by Canadian Packaging Staff

Three long years and $25-million later, the victims of a Maple Leafs Foods listeria outbreak from meats purchased between January 1, 2008 and August 31, 2008 that killed 23 people and made 56 people very ill between is still not resolved.

Despite having paid out the whole settlement nearly three years ago, Maple Leafs Foods president and chief executive officer Michael McCain discussed his shock at the situation of the class action settlement.

“We are dismayed and frustrated at how long this process has taken, given we paid $25 million to settle these claims almost three years ago,” says McCain. “While Maple Leaf had no control over the process, we did everything we could to help get money to victims, including me personally contacting premiers to urge their provincial health authorities to reach a settlement.

“We understand that all the hurdles have now been overcome and court hearings are being scheduled to approve distribution of the settlements to claimants early in the new year.  Our hope is that these funds will provide some help and support to people affected by this tragedy.”
Depending on the victim’s situation, payments will be be between $750 and $125,000.

As of this writing, a date has not yet been set in 2012 for a judge to review the claims.

The result from the Maple Leaf listeria crisis spawned a new Canadian policy on listeria and the read-to-eat food processing segment.