Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

November 15, 2007 16:41 ET

Government of Canada Launches Vaccination Program to Help Farmers Combat Disease in the Hog Sector

SAINT-HYACINTHE, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Nov. 15, 2007) - The Honourable Christian Paradis, Secretary of State for Agriculture, on behalf of the Honorable Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board, today announced the launch of the Circovirus Inoculation Program (CIP) to help address disease-associated mortality issues affecting hog herds in Canada.

"We are committed to helping Canadian hog producers combat disease and increase profitability in the hog sector," said Mr. Paradis. "That is why we are providing immediate financial assistance of $25 million to producers to test and vaccinate hogs in Canada and will continue to work with the industry to develop solutions to ensure the long-term viability of the sector."

While these diseases pose no risk to human health, the economic impacts on the Canadian swine industry have been extensive. On August 20, 2007, Mr. Paradis, on behalf of Minister Ritz, announced the contribution of $76 million over four years to combat disease and enhance prosperity and stability in the hog sector. The CIP is the first phase of the initiative and will allow farmers to be reimbursed up to 50 per cent for diagnostic testing and vaccination of hogs exposed to Porcine Circovirus Associated Diseases (PCVAD2), an umbrella term used to identify a series of diseases brought on by exposure to the virus that can be fatal to hogs.

"The economic impacts on the Canadian swine industry have been severe," said Canadian Pork Council President Clare Schlegel. "We are pleased that funding is now available to offset some of the diagnostic and vaccine costs associated with PCVAD2 and encourage hog producers to apply."

Consistent with the recommendations of an industry-government task team, the four-year initiative for the Control of Disease in the Hog Industry (CDHI) will focus on assisting producers and the industry in four areas: hog vaccination; research; bio-security and best management practices; and developing long-term risk management solutions. The Government of Canada is working closely with the hog industry through the Canadian Pork Council and the veterinary community to develop program details for the remaining three areas of the initiative.

For information on the CIP and how to apply, and more details on PCVAD2, see the attached backgrounder.

BACKGROUNDER

Circovirus Inoculation Program (CIP)

The Circovirus Inoculation Program (CIP) will provide $25 million in financial assistance to hog producers to help offset costs related to the detection and treatment of Porcine Circovirus Associated Diseases (PCVAD2). It is the first phase of the two-phase Initiative for the Control of Disease in the Hog Industry (CDHI) that will see the Government of Canada contribute $76 million over four years to combat disease, conduct research and provide stability to Canada's $8 billion hog industry.

Who Can Apply?

Hog owners or herd managers, whose animals (including sows, boars, gilts and piglets) were part of a herd between March 1, 2006 and December 31, 2008, can apply for funding assistance to help offset the costs of diagnostic testing. If even one animal in an applicant's herd tests positive for PCVAD2, the applicant is also eligible for funding assistance to help offset the costs of vaccinating their hogs. Certification of a positive test by a veterinarian is required.

How Much Funding is Available for Eligible Applicants?

Applicants can receive up to 50 per cent of eligible expenses for diagnostic testing to a maximum of:

- $150 per test;

- $2,000 per fiscal year; and

- $4,000 over the life of the program.

Applicants can also receive up to 50 per cent of eligible expenses for vaccination to a maximum of:

- $1.00 per piglet; and

- $7.00 per gilt, sow and/or boar.

Retroactive payments are available for testing and vaccination that occurred from March 1, 2006 to present provided that:

- a certified laboratory validated a positive test for PCVAD2 in the applicant's herd; and

- a vaccine licensed in Canada after March 1, 2006 was prescribed for herd treatment.

The maximum for all assistance under the program is $500,000 per applicant.

How Can Producers Apply?

- Application forms are being mailed to all Canadian hog producers identified through industry and government client lists;

- Hog producers can also request a program application form by calling Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's toll-free line at 1-800-667-8567; and,

- CIP applications can also be found on the program website: www.agr.gc.ca/CDHI.

When Can Producers Expect a Payment?

Payments will be processed within 70 days from receipt of a completed application.

What is the Application Deadline?

The deadline to apply for CIP assistance is December 31, 2008.

Where Can Producers Get More Information?

For further information on the CIP, producers can call the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada toll-free line at 1-800-667-8567, visit the CIP website at www.agr.gc.ca/CDHI, or e-mail the program at CIP@agr.gc.ca.

Porcine Circovirus Associated Diseases

Porcine Circovirus Associated Diseases (PCVAD) is a term used to define the entire range of diseases affecting pigs that are associated with Pork Circovirus 2 (PCV2) including Postweaning Multisystemic Wasting Syndrome (PMWS), respiratory illness, pneumonia, diarrhea, reproductive disorders and high mortality in pigs.

Symptoms of PCVAD may include depletion of lymphoid cells in growing pigs, inflammation in one or more tissues such as the spleen, thymus, intestines, lymph nodes, lung, kidney, liver, tonsil, etc. and detection of PCV2 within the lesions of growing pigs. PCV2-associated diseases pose no risk to human health.

PCVAD/PMWS is severely affecting the Canadian swine industry, with incidences increasing across Canada and new outbreaks in Western Canada. Recent research shows that mortality rates also seem to be on the rise within infected herds. From 2000 to 2006, deaths and condemnations within the Canadian hog herd increased by 4 percent representing approximately 1.75 million hogs.

Veterinarians and producers are aggressively examining ways to prevent and control PCV2-associated diseases. There are currently 4 vaccines available on the Canadian market for inoculating pigs.

Most success in managing PCV2-associated diseases has come from attending to the details of biosecurity, sanitation, production strategies, environment, and control of other diseases. Avoiding the introduction of live animals, minimizing visitor traffic on the farm, rodent, insect and bird control, minimizing cross fostering activity, cleaning and disinfection of facilities and control of farm pathogens appears to be helpful in preventing disease transmission. Strategic and appropriate vaccination and prompt treatment of ill pigs will also help to reduce the risk of transmitting PCV2-associated diseases between pigs.

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    613-759-7972
    1-866-345-7972
    or
    Office of the Secretary of State
    Mark Quinlan
    Director of Communications
    613-759-1107