It says ‘Product of Canada’ but is it? The growing problem of ferreting out counterfeit vegetables
ETOBICOKE, Ont. — Even on hot days, the forklift operators at the teeming Ontario Food Terminal wear jackets. The showrooms keep the temperature low to preserve the cornucopia of available fruits and vegetables. One operator, perched on a platform at the back of his forklift, impassively munches an apple as he swings past with a load of cauliflower, eggplant and kale.
In a kind of ballet dance under cathedral-like ceilings, the forklifts zip up and down ramps and around corners, loading trucks that will whisk the food to restaurants and grocery stores.
These days, thanks to important investments in greenhouses in Ontario, many of the peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers sold here are locally grown. They come to Canada’s largest fruit and produce wholesale market by truck from gargantuan hydroponic operations concentrated near Leamington, Ont.