An all-party team of just seven MPs will be in charge of a Parliamentary review of Canada's food safety system.
The probe will operate as a sub-committee of the Commons Agriculture Committee. It will look into the events surrounding last summer's Listeriosis outbreak that killed at least 20 people, but also the larger issue of food safety and food inspection in Canada.
The hearings are expected to include a review of federal policies that give industry a greater role in the food safety and inspection process.
Plans are already afoot, according to Liberal MP Wayne Easter, to have the committee use its powers to subpoena documents related to the outbreak that the government is refusing to release to reporters through Access to Information legislation.
Mr. Easter said the committee may also hold in-camera hearings to allow individuals to testify anonymously to the committee without fear of retribution from their employer.
The hearings are expected to begin shortly and there is so far no date set on when they will end. The probe was struck out of concern by some MPs that the government's Listeriosis inquiry, headed by Alberta health expert Sheila Weatherill, does not have adequate powers.
Conservatives on the agriculture committee say they fully support the investigation by MPs.
Conservative MP Pierre Lemieux, who is parliamentary secretary to Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, said he ensured the study was approved in an open hearing so the public could see the Conservatives were on-side.
"I wanted to make sure that the facts were well known," he said. "That we all supported a food safety study and that it be done by a sub-committee."