The Inspector of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has imposed an order imposing conditions in relation to secondary control zones to guard against African swine fever (ASF).

ASF has not been detected in North America, but has been spreading across Asia and Europe since last summer. Although ASF does not affect humans, it is highly contagious and deadly among pigs, cannot be cured and has no vaccine.

On March 19, secondary control zones were declared by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food under subsection 27.1(2) of the Health of Animals Act in respect to ASF. On March 29, an order was made under subsection 27.1(3) of that act designating things as being capable of being affected or contaminated by ASF.

The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food has the power to prohibit or impose conditions on – including requiring a permit for – removing from, moving within or taking into a secondary control zone a designated thing.

The new order imposed the following conditions on removing from, moving within or taking into any of those secondary control zones a thing designated under the order:

1. A designated thing must not be taken into a secondary control zone except in accordance with a permit issued by the Minister.

2. The application for the permit must be accompanied by information that is adequate to allow the Minister to determine that taking the designated thing into the secondary control zone would not, or would not be likely to, result in the introduction into or spread within Canada of ASF.

3. The permit holder must keep records that accurately identify the designated thing and that clearly indicate

  • the state and facility from which the designated thing was exported to Canada
  • the date on which the designated thing is taken into the secondary control zone
  • the details of any treatments applied to the designated thing after the designated thing enters Canada
  • the details of the location to which the designated thing was sent on being removed from the secondary control zone

4. Those records must be held for at least two years at a location in Canada where they may be reviewed by an inspector designated for the enforcement of the Health of Animals Act.

5. The designated thing must not be removed from the secondary control zone unless it is transported by the most direct route of transportation from the secondary control zone to the destination of the designated thing in Canada.

6. If the designated thing is taken into the secondary control zone as part of a bulk shipment, the bulk shipment must have been transported in either single use bulk containers or containers lined with a single use plastic liner, and the bulk shipment must have been handled in such a way as to prevent cross contamination.

7. If the designated thing has been transported as part of a bulk shipment, the bulk shipment must have been handled in such a way to prevent cross contamination between other shipments and that shipment.

8. In the case of a designated thing that is a raw or unprocessed grain or oilseed, the designated thing must not be removed from the secondary control zone unless either

  • the designated thing will be subjected to heat treatment at the importing facility whereby the temperature of the designated thing reaches at least 70 C for 30 minutes or 85 C for five minutes
  • the designated thing will be held at the importing facility for a minimum of 20 days at 20 C or 100 days at 10 C

9. In the case of a designated thing that is a raw or unprocessed grain or oilseed, the designated thing must not be removed from the secondary control zone unless

  • it will be handled in the importing facility in a manner that prevents the direct or indirect contact of untreated products with treated products
  • if there is any direct or indirect contact of the designated thing with untreated materials from any source in the importing facility, the designated thing will then be considered untreated and those untreated materials will be lawfully disposed of in a manner that will not result in the materials entering the animal feed chain or being accessible to wild pigs or other animals

10. In the case of a designated thing that is a meal, the designated thing must not be taken into the secondary control zone unless the designated thing has undergone processing in the state of origin. That processing must have included a heat treatment whereby the temperature of the designated thing reached at least 70 C for 30 minutes or 85 C for five minutes, and untreated materials must not have been added to the processed product after the heat treatment.

11. Sections 6 to 8 and 10 do not apply in respect of a designated thing that leaves the port of export before or on April 30 if the Minister is able to make the determination referred to in section 2 without the application of those sections, with the determination being based on all relevant factors, including the following factors:

  • The zoosanitary status of the country of origin
  • Prior assessment of the veterinary infrastructure of the state of origin by the World Organisation for Animal Health or the Canadian Food Inspection Agency
  • The nature of the product
  • The process and treatment applied to the product or other risk mitigation measures
  • The end use
  • The potential for cross-contamination

View our continuing coverage of the African swine fever outbreak.