Canadian pork industry to protect trade using ASF compartments

Consensus reached on trade of live pigs, pork and pork products
calendar icon 31 October 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

While Canada is free of African swine fever (ASF) and has never had a reported case of this devastating disease, prevention and preparation for its potential introduction into Canada is necessary for protecting Canadian pigs and the pork industry.

Yesterday, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) announced an important milestone in its approach to protect the trade of live pigs, pork and pork products in the event of an outbreak in Canada. In support of the Canadian ASF Compartment Program and following a consultation done in 2022, the CFIA released National Standards and a National Framework to guide industry in the next steps towards implementing the program.

ASF compartments are the creation of distinct sub-populations of pigs that follow common biosecurity management, surveillance and traceability measures (as described in the standards and framework). These compartments are established prior to an outbreak and are intended to allow for the export of products even if they were to originate from within an infected zone.

The Canadian ASF Compartment Program comprises three key components: National Standards, National Framework, and the Compartment Operator Program. The government of Canada is responsible for the Standards and Framework for ASF compartments in Canada, which will guide the Canadian Pork Council in developing the Compartment Operator Program. Compartments will be developed and managed by industry with approval and oversight by the CFIA.

The Canadian ASF Compartment Program, is one of the many tools and efforts by federal and provincial governments, international partners and the pork industry to mitigate the risk of ASF in Canada.

"The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is taking every precaution to protect swine herds and the pork industry from African swine fever," said Harpreet Kochhar, president of CFIA. "The Canadian ASF Compartment Program underscores our commitment to proactive biosecurity and disease management and strengthens Canada's position as a global leader in swine health."

"The Canadian pork industry is unwavering in its dedication to the health of our swine herds and the prosperity of our industry," said René Roy, chair of the Canadian Pork Council. "The Canadian ASF Compartment Program offers a robust tool to manage ASF risks, ensuring our continued success in the global market."

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