Alberta Lamb!

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Transfer of Care requirement and Record keeping requirement in the amended Health of Animals Regulations Part XII (Transport of Animals). 

Please see below Q & A fact sheets on the Transfer of Care requirement and Record keeping requirement in the amended Health of Animals Regulations Part XII (Transport of Animals) from CFIA. These requirements have been identified as areas of confusion and CFIA hope  these fact sheets will help answer a lot of questions.  Included below is a chart comparing the two requirements, again to help industry understand the requirements.

CFIA_ACIA Transfer of care and record keeping fact sheets

CFIA_ACIA Records and TOC comparisions for transporters

Proposed Changes to National Traceability Programs Update 2023
Regulatory changes are coming to national livestock traceability in Canada. 

Regulatory Amendment Timelines

2013 - CFIA launched consultation on trace regulation amendments

2016 – Initial target date for new regulations

2016-2022 – Ongoing discussions regarding proposed regulatory package

2022 – CFIA signals ‘go/no-go’ decision on proposed amendments

2023 – Proposed Regulations to Canada Gazette 1

2024 - Proposed regulations to Canada Gazette 2

2025 – Coming into force of new trace regulations

Movement reporting across value chain:

  • Receiving sites report he move in of animals, with a few exceptions.
  • Animals transported with a movement document.
  • Exporters report move-outs, importers report o move-ins
  • Reports to include departure and destination sites by PID, loading/unloading dates and times, conveyance information, identification of animals’7-day reporting period
  • Requirements extended to sheep, goats, cattle, bison and cervids.
  • Regulated parties to include anyone and everyone who has care and custody of regulated species.
    • Farms, feedlots, assembly yards, community pastures, transporters, feed/water/rest stations, auction marts, abattoirs, deadstock, fairs and exhibitions, vet clinics, etc.

Future State

  • Premise ID(s) required to buy tags and report events
  • Tag animals and carcasses as they leave their farm of origin
  • Report the replacement of approved/revoked identifiers wit list of specific details
  • Report disposal of carcasses bearing approved/revoked identifiers with list of specific detail
  • Report receipt of animals with list of specific details
  • Ensure movement documents accompany all departing animals with list of specific details
  • Report imports with list of specific details
  • Report reports with list of specific details

And it’s not just producers……

  • Intermediate sites (e.g. auction marts, assembly yards, feedlots, fair, exhibition, rodeo, test station, FWR stops)
  • Importers and exporters
  • Abattoirs, renderers, deadstock collectors
  • transporters

CCIA is currently the Responsible Administrator for the Canadian Sheep Identification program, as assigned by the CFIA.

  • CCIA set the program fees – approx. $256,000 in tag fees go to CCIA annually.
  • CSF has MOU with CCIA regarding program delivery.
  • CSF sits on the CCIA board of directors.

Proposed Changes to National Traceability Programs 2018-2019

Regulatory changes are coming to national livestock traceability in Canada. 

In 2006, federal, provincial and territorial ministers of agriculture announced the need to develop a national agriculture and food traceability system, starting with livestock and poultry. An industry-government advisory committee was created to discuss the design and implementation of the proposed traceability system.

The CFIA conducted two rounds of national consultations in 2013 and 2015 on proposed amendments to the Health of Animals Regulations dealing with livestock identification and traceability.   Following the publication of the proposed regulations in Part I of the Canada Gazette (, stakeholders will have 75 days to review and provide comment. The CFIA will review and consider all comments received prior to finalizing the regulation amendments and publishing them in Part II of the Canada Gazette. Once published in Part II of the Canada Gazette the regulations will be considered final and immediately come into force.

Newsletters developed by the Regulatory Implementation Committee are posted below. These updates provide details about the changes and why they are needed.  It is expected that additional Newsletters will be circulated before the publication of the proposed regulations in Part I of the Canada Gazette. 

Premises Identification became mandatory in Alberta on January 1, 2009 under Alberta's Animal Health Act.

Premises Identification (PID), one of the pillars of traceability, links livestock and poultry to land locations or premises. Alberta’s PID Program was established to plan for, control, and prevent the spread of agricultural diseases. It is also used as an early warning system to notify animal owners of a natural disaster such as a flood or fire that could affect their animals or operations. Read how the PID system is used in emergency situations.

What is Premises Identification (PID)?

Premises identification (PID) is an important tool that is used to plan for, control, and prevent the spread of livestock and poultry disease. It can also be used as an early warning system to notify people registered in the PID system of an animal disease or natural disaster (such as a flood or fire) that could affect their animals or operations. Having accurate animal locations, contact information and other key data in one system is critical for a quick and effective emergency response.

PID links livestock and poultry to a geographical location or premises. A PID number is a nine character unique identifier (in Alberta, a PID number starts with ‘AA’, ‘AB’, or ‘AT’) assigned to a specific premises when the geographical location is registered in a PID account. The requirement for premises identification became law in Alberta on January 1, 2009 as part of the Animal Health Act.

Sheep owners require a PID number to:

  • Buy medication for their animals at retail outlets
  • Complete documents such as manifests and permits
  • Sell livestock at auction markets
  • Buy Canadian Sheep Identification Program (CSIP) ear tags
  • Apply for some government agriculture grants and programs

The proposed amendments to Part XV of the federal Health of Animals Regulations include the requirement to provide the PID number for the site of departure and site of destination when transporting livestock. This is anticipated to be in effect in 2025.

Obtain a PID account if you are in care and control of livestock and/or poultry

If you are in care and control of livestock, poultry or other animals in captivity (excluding cats and dogs) and the animals are kept at your premises, you need to apply for a PID account and obtain at least one PID number. Animal owners are encouraged to register additional livestock premises in the PID system, especially if they are located away from the main operation.

If you operate a commingling site (e.g. stable, community pasture, fair ground, etc.), you are required to obtain a PID account, register all your commingling sites and provide the PID number(s) to the users of your site(s).

Keep your PID information current

Effective emergency response and the ability to protect your animals depends on accurate information. It is important that you update your PID account when there are changes (contact information, animal types and capacity, etc.) or if you no longer have livestock on your premises. Inaccurate and outdated information can put your animals at risk during an emergency by delaying notification or delivering an incorrect response from emergency responders.

To review/update your PID information, to create a new PID account or to simply learn more about PID:

Your information is protected under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP Act) and the Animal Health Act (AHA).

Q&A on Premises Identification Information


Livestock Manifests

Under Alberta’s Livestock Identification and Commerce Act (LICA), a completed Alberta Livestock Manifest is required when Alberta sheep are transported or driven within the province or to a destination outside the province. Alberta livestock manifests are available from Livestock Identification Services Ltd. at 1-866-509-2088 or Manifests may also be available from Alberta Agriculture offices, auctions and other locations (including the ALP office).  Use the 'Traceabiltiy Connects' service on the Alberta Agriculture website to search for a provider in your area. 

For help with completing a livestock manifest, download this guide on How to Complete the Alberta Livestock Manifest (pdf).

Sales transactions

When sheep are sold, the sale transaction must be documented in writing by either a bill of sale prepared by the owner or a settlement statement prepared by the purchaser or a livestock dealer on behalf of the seller or the purchaser. The person who sells sheep must disclose whether they are the owner or a livestock dealer acting on behalf of the owner. Also, when sheep are sold, the owner must provide a written livestock security interest declaration to the purchaser or to the livestock dealer acting on behalf of the owner. This declaration can be completed on the livestock manifest or on a separate form.

For more information read the 'Traceability and Transporting Alberta Sheep' page on the Alberta Agriculture website.

Remember - Before Transporting Sheep and Lambs...

Lakeland Carcass Sire Project

Building Better Lambs Terminal Sire Factsheets are available on the Fact Sheets page of this website.

Alberta Sheep Industry Development Strategy

A collaboration between Alberta Lamb Producers and Alberta Agriculture & Rural Development to provide a comprehensive strategy for the development of the sheep industry.

Legal Slaughter/Distribution of Lamb Products

Scrapie is a fatal disease that affects the central nervous system of sheep and goats. It is classified as a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). While the exact cause of scrapie is unknown, it is thought to be associated with the presence of an abnormal form of a protein called a prion.

Other countries, including the USA and Great Britain, are already working to reduce the incidence of scrapie and eventually eradicate it from their flocks. In order to remain competitive and maintain market access, it is in Canada's best interest to increase resistance to scrapie and to establish prevalence of this disease so that it does not become a trade barrier in the future.

The Canadian Food and Inspection Agency (CFIA) and several provincial agricultural ministries have launched a surveillance program to detect scrapie in the national sheep flock and goat herd.  The goal of this program is to identify infected animals in Canada to ensure that proper steps can be taken to completely eradicate the disease from our country.  General requirements include reporting deads on farm over the age of 12 months and complete brain testing.

Scrapie Surveillance flyer

Scrapie Information Sheet 

Enhanced Scrapie Surveillance

Alberta Lamb Producers worked with the provincial government for a number of years in developing scrapie surveillance programs to provide international import and export opportunities for producers. Read more about the Alberta surveillance programs at the CFIA website.

Scrapie Flock Certification Program (SFCP)

The SFCP National Standards were developed by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), in collaboration with the sheep industry, as the basis for Canada’s on-farm, voluntary scrapie control program.  It is intended to be a long-term, internationally recognized flock/herd scrapie control program for the sheep and goat industries. This program is unique as a CFIA approved disease control strategy.  The CFIA only provides a guiding hand in ensuring that the program retains key requirements to meet international standards. The day-to-day management and verification is placed in the hands of industry.

Questions about the National Voluntary Scrapie Flock Certification Program? Contact the national scrapie co-ordinator email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., call 1-866-534-130, or visit

National Genotyping Survey

On March 31, 2009 the National Survey of Scrapie Genetics in Canadian Purebred Sheep came to a close after three and a half successful years. Also known as the National Genotyping Survey, the project was an initiative that involved a number of Canadian sheep industry groups including the Canadian Sheep Federation (CSF) and the Canadian Sheep Breeders’ Association (CSBA).

In total, about 9,300 Canadian purebred sheep were genotype tested through the National Genotyping Survey. Taking into consideration both data sets- national and provincial- the total number of farms and sheep with genotypes in the NSAC database was 18,966 sheep from 496 farms as of March 31, 2009.

In Alberta 5,245 sheep on 71 farms were genotyped.

For more information visit Scrapie Canada, National Genotyping Survey.

The Canadian Verified Sheep Program is a voluntary program that was developed through a partnership among producers, industry and government personnel from across Canada.  The CVSP incorporates multiple factors contributing to ‘social license to operate’ into one program.  Social license is an term used to indicate the level of public trust that an industry holds.  Increasingly for livestock industries maintaining public trust requires proving that good production practices are being followed through the setting measurable standards in areas such as food safety and animal welfare.  The goal of the CVSP is provide sheep producers with an inclusive program that can help them meet these standards.  The CVSP incorporates elements of three existing documents into one program.

The CVSP manual includes chapters covering:

  • On-farm food safety (revised version of the Canadian Sheep and Lamb Food Safe Farm Practices (FSFP) program that was first approved as an official program in 2002).
  • Animal welfare (all ‘Requirements’ from the National Farm Animal Council's Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Sheep and a Flock Health Program).
  • On-farm biosecurity (based on Canadian Food Inspection Agency's The National Sheep On-Farm Biosecurity Standard).

Producers are required to follow the good production practices outlined by the program and to maintain associated records.  To become certified on the program, producers are required to follow a 4-year audit cycle.

More information, access to on-line training, and all program documents (including the full manual and associated forms) are available on the Canadian Sheep Federation website.

The CVSP takes the place of the previous version of the FSFP program.  Program training (but not certification) is currently required for producers requesting funding under the Growing Forward 2 Producer Food Safety Program.

CAP is a five-year, $3 billion federal-provincial-territorial investment in the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector set to begin in April 2018, and is the successor of the 2013-18 Growing Forward 2 partnership. In Alberta, CAP represents a federal - provincial investment of $406 million in strategic programs and initiatives for the agricultural sector.

The roll-out of the CAP program suite in Alberta will begin in April, 2018. It will consist of a phased roll-out of 15 programs over the spring, summer and fall of 2018. Applications and program details consisting of cost-shares and eligible activities and/or items will be released with the opening of each program. The criteria for eligibility will be made available along with the program details.

In Alberta, CAP will deliver programs developed in consultation with stakeholders, and is organized under five themes: Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change; Products, Market Growth and Diversification; Science and Research; Risk Management; and Public Trust.

Check the Canadian Agriculture Partnership website for the latest information or call 310-FARM.

News about CAP programs will be circulated on Alberta Lamb Producers’ N’ewesline, an e-news service. No jokes, SPAM or ads and we keep your e-mail address confidential.


What is Traceability:

Traceability refers to systems that allowing the tracing of an animal or animal product all the way through the supply chain, from birth to slaughter. A fully functional livestock traceability system is based upon the three pillars listed below. Aspects of all three pillars are already mandatory in Alberta for sheep producers.  

  • Animal Identification – The ability to identify and track animals as they are moved through the production system is one of the pillars of traceability. In Canada, all sheep and lambs must be identifed according to the Canadian Sheep Identification Program.
  • Premises Identification – Alberta’s PID Program was established to plan for, control, and prevent the spread of agricultural diseases. If you are an owner of livestock in Alberta you are required under Alberta's Animal Health Act to obtain a Premises Identification (PID) account and obtain a PID number. A PID number is a unique identifying number assigned to a specific piece of property.It is also used as an early warning system to notify animal owners of a natural disaster such as a flood or fire that could affect their animals or operations. By completing a PID Application and keeping your information up-to-date, you will take an important step in protecting your animals and those of other Alberta and Canadian producers. Read more.
  • Animal Movement  – provides the ability to trace where an animal has been and what other animals it has come in contact with over the course of its life. In the event of a disease outbreak, knowing the movement history of an animal is very important in supporting efficient trace-back.  In Alberta a transport manifest is required in most circumstances when sheep are transported. Read more on the Alberta Agriculture and Forestry website or download instructions for completing the manifest.  
    Full animal tracking is still under development.  Proposed changes to traceability programs, included enhanced movement tracking, are anticipated to be in place in 2019. Read more about the proposed regulatory changes.

Together, these enable the Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian (OCVP) or other emergency management officials to pinpoint and isolate specific sites of concern and target resources in the event of a threat to animal or human health as a result of a natural disaster. The integrity of this system also translates into opportunities for Alberta’s livestock and meat industries to differentiate their products. A comprehensive traceability system provides necessary assurances to markets and consumers around the world that our products are safe and of high quality.

With these three pillars in place, Canada will have a robust and reliable traceability system that delivers full confidence in source verification for all livestock species, including cattle, hogs, sheep, poultry and horses. This includes having in place 48-hour emergency response and tracking capabilities. Legislation will be in place to mandate this program.

More details are available on the Alberta Agriculture and Forestry website Traceability in Alberta. Check the interactive 'Traceability Connects' map-based directory of traceability service providers for producers and industry. At the click of a mouse, connect to the traceability services you need, for any species, at a location close to you.

Alberta Lamb Producers is communicating with the government on traceability, representing producer interests as this mandatory program is being developed.

Watch the ALP webinar 'Livestock Traceability: Why it's Important to You' with Katherine Altman recorded on January 30, 2017 (When the video is playing, click the 'Full Screen' icon at bottom right to enlarge)

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The ability to identify and track animals as they are moved through the production system is one of the pillars of traceability.

The Canadian Sheep Identification Program (CSIP) is an industry-led initiative that works to ensure the animal identification component of traceability in Canada's sheep industry is affordable, flexible, effective, and meets legal requirements.  

Under CSIP, all sheep and lambs moved off their farm of origin must be tagged with an approved, uniquely numbered ear tag.  The CSIP numbers of all tags sold are recorded and linked in a database to the contact information of the purchasers.  In Alberta, this database is maintained by the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency. The database is only accessed by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) in the event a trace-back of animals or meat products is required (read more).  For an overview of producer responsibilities under CSIP, download Record Keeping and Reporting Requirements for Sheep Under the Canadian Livestock Identification and Traceability Program.

CSIP is a mandatory program that follows Canada's livestock identification regulations.  These requirements are stipulated in the Health of Animal Act and associated Health of Animals Regulations. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is responsible for enforcing these regulations.  Non-compliance could result in fines of up to $10,000.

For full details of the requirements, please read the following CFIA documents regarding livestock identification requirements (click to download the pdf documents):

All approved CSIP tags are radio frequency identification (RFID) enabled and bear the official CSIP logo.  Shipping animals without an approved tag is illegal. Read ALP's CSIP fact sheet. 

Did you know unused tags can be re-sold to other producers by officially transferring the tag numbers through CCIA?  Download the tag transfer form and contact the CCIA for more information.

YELLOW Shearwell Radio Frequency Identification tag


YELLOW Shearwell RFID Paired (Double) tag* –
one RFID tag, one non-RFID tag with the same CSIP number
Both tags are applied to one animal.
(Note: Shearwell is transitioning from yellow non-RFID
tags to black tags in 2018. Either coloured tag is
acceptable during the transition.)

tag shearwell paired         xs pair 2461 transparent

YELLOW Allflex Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) button


YELLOW Allflex Paired (Combo) RFID and dangle*
one RFID button, one dangle tag with the same CSIP number

tag allflex paired 2tag allflex paired 1

PINK Ketchum Kurl Lock #3
No longer available for purchase.
No longer accepted as a CSIP tags -
It is illegal to ship animals using only this tag.


PINK Plastic Allflex dangle tag
No longer available for purchase.
No longer accepted as a CSIP tag -
 It is illegal to ship animals using only this tag.



All CSIP RFID tags are YELLOW!

*Canadian Sheep Breeders Association members may use a double tagging system with two tags approved and bearing the official identification number under the Canadian Sheep Identification Program as an alternative for tattooing registered sheep         

*The province of Quebec requires each sheep or lamb to bear a paired CSIP tag, please contact the Fédération des Producteurs d'Agneaux et Moutons du Québec