Livestock premises ID participation strengthens Canadian agriculture

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is considering changes to the Health of Animals Regulations for livestock traceability, the agency announced during PremisesIDWeek July 26, a federal release says.

The changes would require all Canadian operators of premises where livestock may be loaded or unloaded from a vehicle to have a valid premises identification number for each site, and to report the number when receiving livestock.

“Being able to trace the movement history of an animal from one point to another will strengthen Canada’s ability to respond quickly to health threats and other emergencies. We encourage producers and stakeholders across the supply chain to increase participation in livestock premises identification,” Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food said in a release.

The five Canadian provinces with mandatory premises identification are Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta – but all provinces and territories have systems in place to issue PID numbers.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), provinces and territories, and members of the livestock industry are encouraging producers, farmers and operators in the Canadian livestock supply chain to participate in livestock premises identification.

Livestock traceability protects Canada’s livestock industry and the public’s well-being by strengthening the ability to respond quickly to disease outbreaks, food safety issues and natural disasters, the release said.

“Knowing where livestock are located and how to contact owners can reduce potential economic, social and environmental impacts to livestock operations,” the release said. Livestock traceability that uses valid premises identification numbers helps the industry to:

  • Rapidly notify registered livestock stakeholders;
  • Prepare, manage and reduce the impact of animal health or food safety issues, such as diseases, fires or floods;l
  • Track and trace animals in the event of an emergency;
  • Better manage emergencies to help maintain market access.

To get a premises identification number, operators need to provide the following information: location of the premises; animal species kept at the premises; the type of agriculture and food operations; and contact information.

The five Canadian provinces with mandatory premises identification are Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta – but all provinces and territories have systems in place to issue PID numbers.

Sectors such as poultry have already independently developed systems for collecting traceability information.

New or existing premises identification numbers should be shared with livestock traceability administrators, such as the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency or Pig Trace Canada, to initiate or complete registration.

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