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Pork Producers Urge Caution in Addressing Use of Carbadox

by 5m Editor
15 August 2006, at 12:35pm

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2220. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.

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Farm-Scape, Episode 2220

Canadian pork producers are encouraging Health Canada to consider potential trade implications as it addresses the foreign use of Carbadox.

Carbadox, an antibiotic used mainly to protect against swine dysentery, was withdrawn from use in Canada in 2001 because of potential human health concerns and now Health Canada is preparing regulations that would establish maximum residue levels in imported pork products.

Canadian Pork Council executive director Martin Rice explains that's creating some concern within countries that still allow the use of Carbadox.

" The pronouncements that Health Canada has made about taking steps to ban it have created some perceptions, some interpretations that would suggest a constraint on exporting pork into Canada from a country that still has Carbadox available. That has been an interpretation.

We are continuing to discuss with the department if indeed that is a correct interpretation and how we can avoid unnecessary trade implication from this.

Health Canada is well aware of the international obligations that we have under the WTO and other agreements such as NAFTA that the measures we take to protect food safety and animal health, in which we certainly don't have any disagreement with, but those measures need to be the least trade restrictive possible.

So, we would be involved as we can be in urging our regulators to take an approach which meets their mandate to address food safety issues as they see them but in ways that don't unnecessarily restrict trade."

Rice notes he's not aware of any incident where the use of Carbadox has resulted in the rejection of any imported pork product or any residue result that would give rise to onerous regulations in Canada against countries that have Carbadox available.

Staff Farmscape.Ca

5m Editor