The health of our herds and the safety of the food supply are top priorities for dairy farmers, and traceability is an important part of this commitment.

Tracking Identity and Movement of Dairy Cattle

Under proAction, everyone who owns or has the possession, care or control of dairy cattle must record and report animal identity, movementand location.

All dairy farms have a premises identification number. Since 2001, all cattle have been systematically tagged and since 2017, all dairy cattle have been dual-tagged at birth, which ensures that they can be easily and accurately identified and traced even if one of the tags is lost by the animal.

By keeping such meticulous records and implementing comprehensive traceability practices, farmers can prepare for, manage and reduce the impact of potential animal health issues.

Robust traceability practices mean quicker response times to emergencies, but they also provide better data for research and an improved understanding of the movement of Canadian cattle.

Introducing DairyTrace

In October 2020, Lactanet Canada and Dairy Farmers of Canada launched DairyTrace, the national dairy cattle traceability program, providing a single, common framework for dairy farmers to track animal identity and movements. By harmonizing data under a common, national framework, DairyTrace will promote information sharing and potentially add value to research and genetics initiatives, all while aligning with the traceability module of proAction.

DairyTrace takes advantage of existing structures, systems and solutions within the Canadian dairy cattle sector, including partnerships with Agri-Traçabilité Québec (ATQ) and Holstein Canada, which provides benefits in terms of efficiency, cost effectiveness and timely implementation.

ATQ has expertly led the livestock traceability program in Québec for over 18 years, under which 100% of Quebec dairy farms already have an animal movement system in place. ATQ will be hosting, supporting, and transferring data to the DairyTrace system and will continue to provide its well-established services to Québec producers via SimpliTRACE.

Outside Québec, dairy producers will continue to purchase dairy bovine tags via the National Livestock Identification for Dairy (NLID) program, which will now be dovetailed alongside DairyTrace customer services. Farmers are encouraged to report dairy cattle movement information to DairyTrace now and will be required to by September 2021.

Last updated: 20/12/08

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