N.S. Turkey Farmers change tune
Source: AtlanticFarmer.com
The Turkey Farmers of Nova Scotia (TFNS) has a new excuse for why it slammed the door February 23 on Nova Scotians turning to Larkin Brothers of Prince Edward Island as a source for “free range license holders and vendor” poults.        In the February 23 email communiqué TFNS wrote, “This notice is to advise you that .you are not to order poults from Larkin Brothers, as he (sic) is not a registered Hatchery.”
        Further, “You are to order direct from a registered Hatchery as noted below.” A list of 11 hatcheries in Quebec and Ontario followed.
        Later the same day TFNS distributed a “Correction,” stating that Eldon Mundle of Pugwash, N.S., who at one time started poults for individuals and vendors, had been contacted by Turkey Farmers and that “Eldon has given us permission to release his name and telephone number for those that require their birds to be raised until two weeks of age.”
        This is the service Larkin Brothers provided for the past five years. While some small growers may buy day-olds from out-of-province hatcheries, many would rather buy hardier two-week old birds.
        Rural Delivery phoned Eldon Mundle who said that he does not own or operate a hatchery. He confirmed that the TMB had contacted him, but said that he was “on the fence” as to whether or not he would raise day-olds until he had firm orders for at least 2,000 birds.
        In a brief phone conversation Monday (March 2), Sonya Lorette, TFNS general manager, replied that the reason Larkin Brothers was dropped as a supplier was because the company “is not in good standing.”
Asked for further explanation, she replied that for privacy reasons, “I can not disclose any more.”
        Questioned why Eldon Mundle was acceptable to TFNS while Larkin Brothers was not – considering neither is a hatchery – Lorette replied that Mundle “is within our jurisdiction.”
        In response to a request for clarification, Lorette replied, “That's all I can tell you. Have a good day.” She then hung up.
        Is it about the levy that TFNS wants to collect on all poults purchased by Nova Scotians? Larkin Brothers received a bill from the association last August for $12,000 in levies for poults sold through feed stores the previous spring. Had they any warning this was coming? “None whatsoever,” Harvey Larkin says. Had there been, the levy could have been incorporated in the price Larkin Brothers charged for the poults, which it was not. 
        Brothers Harvey and Paul Larkin wondered if TFNS was attempting to collect the levy twice, for it was their understanding stores in Nova Scotia selling their started poults were charging the levy. A check with stores in the province confirmed that this was the case. “We told people up front that the price included the levy,” said one store manager contacted for this story.
        A lawyer wrote TFNS on behalf of Larkin Brothers objecting to the $12,000 bill and generally stating that it was not acceptable. There was no reply, according to Larkin Brothers.