Today’s food is safer than it ever has been. This is in large part thanks to the Canadian Quality Assurance (CQA) program and incoming Canadian Pork Excellence (CPE) program. CQA and CPE are an on-farm programs that apply to all hog slaughter facilities inspected by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).
On-farm quality assurance demonstrates to consumers that Canadian pork producers are following standards of production that promote a safe and wholesome product. With CQA and CPE, Canada’s pork industry can maintain and enhance competitiveness with international markets.
While CQA outlines standards for food safety, the Animal Care Assessment (ACA) guide focuses on animal care practices. This guide was introduced by the Canadian Pork Council (CPC) to help producers evaluate and improve animal care practices on their farms.
CPC owns and is responsible for the development of on-farm quality assurance programs. Provincial organizations like Alberta Pork are responsible for program delivery and administration, as well as for validator training. Producers are responsible for the implementation and upkeep of these programs for their farms.
Validation (auditing and inspection) gives credibility to the on-farm quality assurance. Highly qualified professionals (veterinarians or animal scientists) visit producers' farms to determine whether they are meeting the requirements of these programs. Validation ensures that these programs are implemented as documented and that they are effective in controlling or minimizing specific hazards.
For more information about on-farm quality assurance, producers and validators can contact Javier Bahamon, Quality Assurance and Production Manager, Alberta Pork by email at email@example.com or by phone at 780-469-8982, toll-free at 1-877-247-PORK (7675).