Ottawa – Animal Care Assessment (ACA) requirements will become a component of the Canadian Quality Assurance Program (CQA) as of Jan. 1, 2012.
This means that as of next year producers will need to meet the requirements of the ACA to maintain their CQA status.
The CQA is the on-farm food safety program for Canadian hog producers. The ACA is an auditable, third-party program that helps farmers demonstrate they are following the standards in the codes of practice.
The Canadian Pork Council says the production practices currently used on most Canadian hog farms already comply with the guidelines in the ACA. The ACA program provides a way for producers to document and validate those practices and reassure customers that livestock are being treated humanely and responsibly.
All producers are encouraged to use the remainder of 2011 to familiarize themselves with the ACA program and complete and submit a self-declaration.
For all farms, the self-declaration done this year will suffice until their 2012 regular CQA validation. At that point, farmers will complete the ACA documentation as part of their regular CQA renewal process.
Farms that are scheduled for a full CQA validation in 2012 will also be subject to a full validation of their ACA. Farms that are scheduled for a partial CQA validation in 2012 will be able to use the self-assessment again to demonstrate compliance with ACA.
It is the producers’ responsibility to ensure provincial delivery agents receive the ACA documentation as part of their CQA renewal beginning Jan. 1, 2012.