Canada updates pig code of practice

Canada revises pig code to include commitment to adopt loose housing for sows, new pain control requirements and enhanced environmental enrichment.

After three years of multi-stakeholder consultations and a 60-day public comment period that drew record-setting engagement for both diversity of perspective and number of comments, Canada has made its updated Code of Practice for the Care & Handling of Pigs official.

"The new code of practice is a significant step forward for the Canadian industry," said Florian Possberg, pork producer and chair of the Code Development Committee. "It is a step that recognizes the healthy and rigorous debate of a diverse group of stakeholders to constructively address pig welfare in Canada.”

According to the Canadian Pork Council (CPC), highlights of the revised code include a full commitment to adopt loose housing for sows and gilts in all new facilities built after July 1, new pain control requirements and enhanced environmental enrichment.

The code of practice is a product of the National Farm Animal Care Council and the Code Development Committee, a 17-person committee comprising representatives from the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies, pig producers, scientists, transporters, processors, veterinarians and government.

The Code is available online at www.nfacc.ca/codes-of-practice/pigs.

"The Canadian Pork Council and its members are proud of the new Pig Code and the credibility the entire process lends to its creation," CPC chair Jean-Guy Vincent said. "The new code is a source of tremendous pride. It represents our commitment to the animals in our care, the sustainability of our industry, our ability to work collaboratively with a diverse stakeholder group and the leadership we provide to a global industry."

Financial support for the code was provided by Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada.

CPC serves as the national voice for hog producers in Canada. A federation of nine provincial pork industry associations, CPC's purpose is to play a leadership role in achieving and maintaining a dynamic and prosperous Canadian pork sector.

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