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Manitoba Clean Environment Commission Report Released

Recommends Licensing to Allow a Second-Shift Expansion at the Maple Leaf Brandon Pork Plant


November 3, 2003 –
Brandon, Manitoba – Manitoba Conservation today announced that it has received the report from
the Clean Environment Commission recommending the issuance of licenses, subject
to certain conditions, to support a second-shift expansion at the Maple Leaf
Brandon pork plant. The Approvals Branch of Manitoba Conservation will review
the recommendations and is responsible for issuing the licenses related to
expansion of the City of Brandon Industrial Wastewater Treatment Plant (IWWTP)
and modifications to the Maple Leaf pork plant.


“We are pleased to receive the support of the Clean
Environment Commission and the Province of Manitoba, which will allow Maple
Leaf to fully realize the operating potential of the Brandon facility,” said
Anne Tennier, Vice President of Engineering and Environmental Affairs, Maple
Leaf Foods. “The Clean Environment Commission conducted a very thorough and
comprehensive hearing and we will be carefully reviewing their report. 
Maple Leaf is committed to environmentally sustainable growth in Manitoba
supported by our continued investment in people, assets and technology. We look
forward to working with the City of Brandon and the Province to realize the
benefits this expansion will provide.”


The Brandon plant will only be expanded to a second shift
once all the environmental and operating requirements have been met, including
establishing an adequate supply of quality hogs, securing a skilled and
permanent work force, and developing value-added markets for the increased
volume of products. The proposal to upgrade the IWWTP includes implementing
leading edge technology that will significantly improve future effluent quality
over the current system, with lower nutrient levels in the treated wastewater
than from the current single shift. 


Maple Leaf believes that there is currently sufficient sow
production in Manitoba to meet the needs of a second shift at the Brandon
facility. As a result, the Company is slowing down the siting of new hog
production operations and is focused on balancing existing sow production with
nursery and finishing capacity.  The start-up of a second shift is not
expected to commence before the summer of 2005.  


The Maple Leaf Brandon pork plant was first commissioned in
1999 and currently employs approximately 1300 people. A second shift expansion
is expected to result in approximately 900 additional jobs in the Province of
Manitoba.


Maple Leaf Foods Inc. is a leading Canadian food processing
company committed to delivering quality food products to consumers around the
world. Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, the Company employs more than 18,000
people at its operations across Canada and in the United States, Europe and
Asia.