Food and animal safety is an integral part of protecting people and animals throughout all steps of the supply chain. Applying these directives throughout transportation is no different. On March 19, 2018 the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), in joint affiliation with the Canadian Animal Health Coalition, announced the publication of the new voluntary National Biosecurity Standard for Livestock, Poultry and Deadstock Transportation, a program called LPDT for short. The standard itself was developed over two years as a collaborative initiative led by the CFIA and the CAHC, along with representatives from producer associations, renderer associations, transport companies, private veterinary practitioners and the Council of Chief Veterinary Officers.
The purpose of the LPDT Standard is to create a common understanding of biosecurity best practices to help prevent the transmission of diseases during livestock, poultry and deadstock transportation. It reads as a reference guide for livestock, poultry and deadstock transporters and for other agricultural service providers and producers when transporting any of the following:
Implementing these practices will help to maintain a biosecurity chain while animals or deadstock are transported to or from farms and other agricultural facilities. This will in turn better protect Canada’s animals and economy from the damage caused by animal disease. In general, transportation poses a risk of spreading infectious diseases from one infected animal to a larger number, potentially even cross-species depending on transport conditions.
The transfer can be by direct or indirect means. Direct transmission to susceptible animals occurs via physical contact with infected animals or carcasses (e.g. through rubbing, licking, breeding, biting, etc.) or through contact with body fluids (e.g. blood, saliva, feces, urine, milk), lesions, aerosols (through coughing, sneezing) and other discharges from infected animals or carcasses. Indirect transmission involves an intermediate carrier that becomes contaminated and is a source of infection for susceptible animals. The body fluids (e.g. blood, saliva, feces, urine, milk), lesions or aerosols (through coughing, sneezing) from infected animals or carcasses can contaminate equipment, vehicles, people (including their clothing and footwear), which may subsequently transmit pathogens to susceptible animals who come into contact with them. The pathogens can also be indirectly transmitted through living vectors such as birds, rodents or insects that come in contact with the infected animals or their excretions. Shared feed and water which is contaminated by discharges from infected animals can also indirectly transmit pathogens to healthy animals.
The LPDT Standard describes biosecurity best practices for various phases of transportation, including cleaning and disinfection procedures. This includes standard operational controls that are identified as both routine or enhanced. These phases include those associated with actions between loads, during loading, during transit and during unloading. Details in accordance to the vehicle type involved in transport, the actual transport units design and record keeping must be documented and kept available for review. Commercial companies and independent drivers are encouraged to incorporate these voluntary biosecurity measures into their transportation practices.
The tenants of the Standard will be incorporated into the Canadian Livestock Transport Certification Program, administered by the Canadian Animal Health Coalition. Benefits of certification under this program include the ability to ensure clients and consumers of your commitment to ensuring that every possible precaution is taken during the transportation of animals. If you believe that these biosecurity practices are important for your organization, need assistance with applying for certification or have any general questions feel free to visit http://inspection.gc.ca/animals/terrestrial-animals/biosecurity/standards-and-principles/transportation/eng/1519235033628/1519235183948 or reach out to one of our Food Safety experts.
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