Livestock Traceability Offers Benefits for Animal Health Food Safety International Trade

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2062. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.
calendar icon 15 February 2006
clock icon 3 minute read

Farm-Scape, Episode 2062

Agriculture and Agrifood Canada suggests, while animal health is the primary of focus of livestock traceability, the issue also has implications for food safety as well as international trade.

The Canadian Livestock Identification Agency, the umbrella organization which is coordinating the creation of a national multispecies livestock traceability system for Canada, has recently circulated three new documents, a draft strategic plan, a draft standards and performance target document and a draft memorandum of understanding, among its member organizations for comments and suggestions.

Dan Lutz, Director of Traceability with Agriculture and Agrifood Canada, suggests the ability to track livestock goes far beyond animal health.

"The primary focus of the CLIA is on the animal health issues but we know from our experiences with BSE and other animal diseases in the past that these also affect our ability to trade our meat products. Certainly there's also the linkage on through to safety of product.

Traceability has the potential to help our industry in many ways, animal health, food safety, market access in terms of trade rules but also perhaps in the longer term as a branding opportunity for Canada. The ministers made their commitment in their meetings of last June and November that livestock traceability is important to Canada and we need to move forward on that.

This is one vehicle, one way of people to express their opinions and thoughts on where we need to go as a nation."

Lutz maintains, because traceability is not a simple topic, it's important to bring all of the various interests together at the same table.

He says the hope is that stakeholders will take the time to read the documents and provide reactions and recommendations back to the group. He says this input is needed at this stage to decide the best track to follow on livestock traceability in Canada.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

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