CFHS is the founding national animal welfare organization of the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC), which coordinates a national approach to advance farm animal welfare through development of species specific Code of Practice for on farm care and handling.
In Canada each year, approximately 700 million farm animals are transported from farm to auction or slaughter. Approximately 1.6 million of these animals, mostly chickens, are found dead on arrival. Many more arrive sick or injured following their long, grueling journeys and need to be euthanized. Transportation is the most alien and stressful experience that a farm animal will have in its lifetime. The longer and harder this experience is, the more risk there is of stress-induced illness, injury and death. These animals deserve more dignity and care – just because they are headed to slaughter does not mean we should allow them to suffer while they are still alive.
One of the major hurdles that we face is that in December 2016, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) released Canada's new draft transport regulations. After more than 10 years of pushing for an overhaul of our inadequate and irresponsible regulations, CFHS is disappointed to report that the proposed changes don't go nearly far enough.
In 2018, in addition to work on current codes of practice, NFACC will convene the Code Development Committee to develop a revised Transportation Code to replace the current out of date code and ensure it aligns with current animal welfare science.
The work of NFACC promises the opportunity to ensure that industry will have standards stricter than the CFIA regulations that align with current animal welfare science and that we can create an industry that transports animals in a timely fashion without suffering by meeting their animal welfare needs.
This initiative will influence the lives of millions of animals annually, now and into the future.