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  • Writer's pictureCAFE

Livestock traceability information

Updated: Apr 30, 2020

UPDATE (September 9, 2019)

  1. There have been many questions about current livestock traceability requirements. As a result, the Ontario Association of Agricultural Societies (OAAS) and CAFE have put together a document for any fair, exhibition or agricultural society that hosts any livestock on their grounds available here.

  2. Please share this with any volunteers, staff, directors or committee members who manage or are involved in livestock shows on the grounds.

  3. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact your provincial association or CAFE (contact information is available in the document).

Original Message

CAFE is working closely with industry stakeholders on livestock traceability as it pertains to fairs, exhibitions and agricultural societies. We understand that the current and proposed changes are not only potentially a financial and administrative burden to you, but also raise concerns of health and safety. As the majority of fairs, exhibitions and agricultural societies are run by or heavily rely on volunteers, these concerns become even more pressing. We want to ensure the success of your events for years to come and are working in close collaboration with the provincial associations to represent your interests.

Below you will find important documents and updates about livestock traceability as it relates to your events. NOTE: The information provided is of a federal scope. Your province may have additional rules, guidelines and information. Contact your provincial association for further information. Please review carefully



What do I need to do this summer for livestock traceability?There is nothing different you need to do for this summer. However, since 2000, fairs and exhibitions have been deemed responsible to ensure all animals who arrive on the grounds have approved tags. The best practice to be compliant with this is to tell all exhibitors that their animals will not be allowed on the grounds if they are not properly identified with an approved tag. You can include these in your rules and regulations and include signage on your grounds at your entrances to support this regulation.

Should I be tagging animals on my grounds? We do not recommend you be responsible for tagging animals for liability reasons. Instead, we recommend that you do not allow animals on the grounds that are not tagged, and if a tag is removed or lost that the owner of the animal replace the tag as soon as possible.

Why did the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) email me?As part of the proposed changes, you will need to get a premise identification number (PID), and the CCIA is building their database of PIDs. To get a PID, please contact your provincial representative.

What animals are subject to livestock traceability?Currently, cattle, bison, sheep and pigs are subject to livestock traceability.

Where does the fair and exhibition industry stand on this?The provinces and national organization (CAFE) have signed a position statement on livestock traceability. We are not in favour of fairs and exhibitions being responsible for tagging and reporting.

What should I do?

More information will follow on how you can support the position statement before and during the 75 day comment period.  It is important that we have a unified voice in advocating for change. At this point, you should:

  • Amend your rules and regulations to specify that all animals arriving on your grounds require approved tags

  • Sign up for a premise identification number and inform CCIA of this number (it will be required regardless of whether fairs and exhibitions are responsible for submitting when animals arrive on and leave the fairgrounds)

  • Monitor your inboxes for emails from CAFE and your provincial association regarding next steps.


What is going to possibly change?There are proposed changes that will mean your fair or exhibition will be obligated to record and submit when animals arrive on and leave your fairgrounds. As well, goats and cervids would be subject to livestock traceability regulations.

When will these changes likely happen? We have just received notice that the earliest these changes will be discussed is Winter/Spring 2020. Which means final approval will not occur until late 2020 at the earliest. You will likely have to implement changes in 2021.

The regulations need to be published in the Canadian Gazette (Winter/Spring 2020) with a 75 day comment period. The comments are then reviewed and the final version will be published in the Canadian Gazette. Once the final version is published, the rules will be implemented.

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