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Beef producers hire legal heavyweights to fight border

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Feb 10, 2005
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Beef producers hire legal heavyweights in effort to open border to live cattle
CALGARY (CP) - Two Canadian beef producers groups are hiring some heavy legal fire power in a fight to pry open the American border to live Canadian cattle.

They said that what they are really worried about is the threat that the flow of boxed beef products could also be halted.

Right now, that's one of the only beef products crossing into the United States.

Alberta Beef Producers and the Canadian Cattlemen's Association have hired a Washington, D.C., law firm to represent their interests.

The two groups have also jointly filed for intervener status in a lawsuit to be heard in Montana in July.

Earlier this month, a judge in the state slapped an injunction on the re-opening of the American border to live Canadian cattle, which was scheduled for March 7.

The July hearing is to determine whether the border should stay shut permanently.

Producers' chairman Erik Butters says the decision in the U.S. District Court later this summer could impact not only live cattle, but boxed beef as well.

He says they want the lawyers to protect the boxed beef trade at all costs.

© The Canadian Press, 2005

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