The Canadian Pork Council (CPC) issued a statement on the proposed changes to the food and drug regulations related to antimicrobials that were published in the Canada Gazette, Part I on July 2, 2016.

The industry’s on-farm food safety Pig Safe Canada Program, which falls under the Canadian Pork Excellence Platform, guides producers to follow best practices on antimicrobial use, work with herd health veterinarians and keep records on medication used.

CPC believes the use of antibiotics is an important tool for animal welfare and herd management, according to the statement. The organization’s goal is to produce safe food while reducing the need for antibiotics. The pork industry seeks to reduce the need for antibiotics by investing in the Canadian Pork Excellence platform in areas such as Pig Safe and PigTrace, increased biosecurity, co-ordination and communication. Producers are also investing in research to develop a set of tools that will arm the Canadian swine industry with the necessary information to develop targeted and more effective treatment strategies specific to each disease situation.

As part of a global initiative to address the growing public health problem of antimicrobial resistance, the CPC understands that more can be done. Enhanced surveillance systems to monitor antimicrobial uses and resistance, attention to alternatives and continued focus on responsible use ares critical.

The CPC supports the work of the National Farmed Animal Health and Welfare Council and the recommendations provided to Canadian animal agriculture stakeholders in the Council’s Antimicrobial Stewardship in Food Animal in Canada document.

The CPC looks forward to continuing to work with stakeholders to see that antimicrobials needed to protect both human and animal health continue to be available and effective.

The CPC serves as the national voice for hog producers in Canada. It is a federation of nine provincial pork industry associations representing approximately 7,000 hog farms, producing 25.5 million animals per year and generating over $13 billion in economic activity. The organization's purpose is to play a leadership role in achieving and maintaining a dynamic and prosperous Canadian pork sector.