By Bruce Cochrane
The introduction of Swine Traceability is expected to give Canada's pork industry an advantage in terms of animal disease response, food safety and market access.
Under changes to Canada's Health of Animals Regulation, due to take effect July 1 to accommodate swine traceability for the purpose of animal disease response and food safety, custodians of pigs will become the first required to do movement reporting as well as animal identification.
Jeff Clark, the manager of PigTrace Canada an initiative of the Canadian Pork Council, explains when pigs leave one facility to go to another both the shipper and receiver of those animals will be required to report key movement information including the departure and destination locations, the date and time of loading and unloading, the number of animals, the vehicle's licence plate number and any required animal identifiers within seven days.
Jeff Clark-Canadian Pork Council:
First and foremost the program was developed to safeguard the pork industry and it's not just pigs, it's livestock as a whole.
But for our purposes it's safeguarding the pork industry against animal health issues, food safety issues.
Most recently definitely with PED if we were up and running PigTrace would have been invaluable to trace out PED but we know there will be future situations as well.
That's the emergency management side of things.
From a market access point of view and value added we know there's opportunities there but our focus is on emergency management.
We'll let the traders and people smarter than me find opportunities for the market place and hopefully get some additional dollars flowing into our Canadian industry here.
Clark says producers have a number of options available for movement reporting including a mobile application, a desktop application on the web and a toll free number.
He notes education kits will be circulated through the provincial pork organizations across Canada, a public awareness campaign is planned to draw attention to the fact that this program is launching and all of the information will be available on PigTrace.Ca.