Canadian Foreign Animal Disease Preparedness Moving Forward

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Farmscape for January 4, 2021

Full Interview 6:23 Listen

The Manager of Quality Assurance and Animal Care Programs with Manitoba Pork says the Canadian pork sector is making progress in preparing for a foreign animal disease outbreak but there is more to be done. “African Swine Fever: How is Canada Getting Prepared?” will be the focus of a Swine Innovation Porc webinar set for Wednesday. Mark Fynn, the Manager of Quality Assurance and Animal Care Programs with Manitoba Pork, says preparing for a foreign animal disease requires a multifaceted approach and one of the key aspects to be considered is how we can humanely euthanize animals that can no longer be marketed in the event of a foreign animal disease.

Clip-Mark Fynn-Manitoba Pork:
We want to try to make this as stress free as possible for the pigs obviously and the people involved as well. As much as we possibly can we want to maintain the same flow of animals to the same places and so looking at slaughter facilities that are attuned to doing humane euthanasia, involving them in that as well as some of our other common methods of euthanasia are what we’re hoping for first and foremost.
It’s very hard for caregivers of animals to perform these tasks and so we’re trying to take that out of their hands as much as possible and try and keep things as normal as possible should we have to deal with a terrible event like a foreign animal disease incursion.
I’m positive about the progress that we’ve been making between all of the parties that are involved at the government and industry levels in preparation for this but the truth is there’s still a lot of work to be done to get us to a place where we’re comfortable with our plan for dealing with a foreign animal disease.

We just need to keep working to get to a point where we’re more confident in our response and hopefully keep putting things in place such as biosecurity and agreements with other countries so we never have to deal with this eventuality.

Fynn says there’s a lot of players engaged in the process and we’re making good progress on getting plans in place. Anyone interested can register for the African Swine Fever webinar at swineinnovationporc.ca.

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