Zoning Key to Continued Cross Border Livestock Movement in Animal Health Emergency

Pigs standing in an eco shelter
Pigs standing in an eco shelter

The Veterinary Counselor with the Canadian Pork Council says Canada U.S. zoning arrangements form a critical tool to facilitate the cross-border movement of livestock while guarding against the spread of disease

 by Bruce Cochrane – Farmscape.ca

“Cross-Border Livestock Health and U.S. Canada Coordination in an Animal Health Emergency” were discussed as part of the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region Summit, this week in Calgary.
Dr Egan Brockhoff, the Veterinary Counselor for the Canadian Pork Council and member of the Swine Innovation Porc Coordinated African Swine Fever Research Working Group, notes the Canadian and U.S. livestock networks are interconnected.

“Big parts of our discussion were on how we  protect the health of our herds and mitigate the risk of spread

“We’ve got a very north south movement of livestock. We’ve got interconnected businesses north of the border, south of the border and so we spent a lot of time talking about how do we simplify the border, how do we thin the border in terms of regulatory challenges to ensure that we’re able to move livestock and keep our businesses moving smoothly.

“Big parts of our discussion were on how we continue to simplify that. In the same breath though we want to protect the health of our herds and, whether it be a disease outbreak in the United States or a disease outbreak in Canada, how do we control, how do we eradicate that and how do we mitigate the risk of spread?

“We talked a lot about zoning and our primary control zones, zoning arrangement with the United States. So, we’ve identified a population that may have a specific disease.

“How do we control that population’s movement and, at the same time, how do we allow for the for rest of the healthy populations to move?

“So, our bilateral zoning arrangement with the U.S. is a critical tool in that and how do we facilitate its simplicity but at the same time making sure we’re not moving disease?”

Dr. Brockhoff says we don’t want to put the health of our animals at risk so we need mechanisms in place that allow for this movement with good science guiding us.

Farmscape is produced on behalf of North America’s pork producers

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