Canadian Government Invests in RFID for Livestock

RFID for Canadian CowsA new investment suggests that The Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) believes in RFID.  The investment, in excess of  $1.6 million was announced by Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and Member of Parliament Devinder Shory (Calgary-Northeast). It will allow the CCIA to continue implementation of an effective RFID-powered traceability system to track the movement of livestock. Hoping to give Canadian producers a competitive edge in the marketplace.

"A national traceability system is a win-win for Canadian producers, the value chain, and consumers," said Minister Ritz. "The Canadian Cattle Identification Agency is helping to develop a world-class system and today's investment will allow it to keep working full steam ahead on initiatives that will help secure Canada's reputation for having safe and high-quality food."

The CCIA has been working closely with auction marts across countrywide to test multiple cost-effective Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) systems that can track the movement of livestock. With the bulk of this new investment, the CCIA will continue to work on Phase Two and explore the feasibility and benefits of linking the RFID system to the auction mart's existing computer systems. By creating an integrated management tool, linking these two systems would help auction marts track livestock and sales data.

The remainder of the investment will be used to evaluate the accuracy of the data currently being tracked and identify ways to improve the process of distributing tags.

"The results of Phase Two will be outlined in a business case that identifies issues, opportunities, costs and performance to evaluate the impact of fully automated RFID systems at the auction markets as well as buying stations and assembly yards," says Darcy Eddleston, chair of CCIA. "CCIA works closely with the Government to help implement a traceability program that is strong, credible and meets the needs of industry."

To date, the Government of Canada has committed a total of up to $4.45 million towards the CCIA's traceability initiatives under the Canadian Integrated Food Safety Initiative (CIFSI).

Through CIFSI the Government of Canada supports national organizations in the development and implementation of traceability processes and systems.


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