Preventing African swine fever from entering Canada

Statement

October 10, 2018 – Ottawa, Ontario

As Canada's Chief Veterinary Officer (CVO), I want to assure Canadians that we are monitoring outbreaks of African swine fever (ASF) in China and Europe.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has strict regulatory import controls in place to prevent the entry into Canada of animals and their products and by-products from countries where diseases of concern are known to occur. The CFIA is working closely with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to enforce these import controls, with a focus on travellers entering Canada from affected countries, to reduce the risk of these diseases entering Canada. We have also issued border lookouts to stop shipments of fresh pork and other raw and unprocessed porcine commodities as new outbreaks occur.

African swine fever is a reportable disease under the Health of Animals Act and the CFIA has the laboratory capability and the appropriate surveillance systems in place to detect occurrences of foreign animal diseases like ASF.

There have been no reported cases of ASF in Canada. At this time, we are determining if any additional measures are required to prevent the introduction of this disease.

Everyone has a role to play in reducing the risks associated with animal diseases and I especially encourage Canada's swine industry, as well as Canadian travellers, to be mindful of and practice the following preventative measures:

  • refer to the list of countries that have been officially evaluated by Canada as free of certain diseases; (the European Union is officially recognized by Canada as free of African swine fever, with the exception of some affected countries)
  • declare at the border if you have been on a farm or are going to a farm
  • declare at the border if you are bringing animal and/or food products
  • avoid contact with animals for at least 14 days after returning to Canada if you have recently travelled to a country where serious diseases exist (including contact with wildlife, farm animals and zoo animals)
  • carefully source animals, products and by-products, as well as feed and feed ingredients.
  • consult the National Biosecurity Guide for the Livestock and Poultry Feed Sector for guidance on livestock feed biosecurity
  • practice on-farm biosecurity to help prevent diseases from developing and spreading
  • consult the National Swine Farm-Level Biosecurity Standard for best practices.

Learn more about African swine fever and measures that swine farmers can take to protect their herds.

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