2017 Harvest

2017 Harvest

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Court prepared to determine what is "normal farm practice"

Madam Justice Stewart of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice says the Court is prepared, in the case of Rausch v. Pickering (City), to decide whether raising wild boars constitutes a "normal farm practice" for the purpose of the Farming and Food Protection Act, 1998.  In a decision released June 28, she declined to strike out James Rausch's claim that enforcement by the City of Pickering under its Exotic Animal By-law was an abuse of process or malicious prosecution (and that entry onto his property for the purpose of enforcement was a trespass).  Rausch had amended his claim to include a pleading that his raising of wild boars is a "normal farm practice" and is exempt from the By-law (essentially asserting a new claim that the City was negligent in breaching the Farming and Food Protection Act, 1998).

Justice Stewart found that it was not plain and obvious that Rausch's claim was doomed to fail.  Also, she ruled that it was not necessary for the parties to go to the Normal Farm Practices Protection Board to have the issue decided.  The Court could make a determination under the Act for the purposes of the litigation - it would serve no goal of fairness or economy to refer the issue to the Board for preliminary determination, given how intertwined the issue was with the other issues to be determined by the Court.

Read the decision at: James Rausch v. Corporation of the City of Pickering.