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If you have any questions, ideas or additions for the Scrapie program up to now or for the coming future please contact the Scrapie program co—ordinator. The Scrapie committee meets annually or upon any specific requests.

August 2005 Scrapie Canada Update

Scrapie Projects Underway

Throughout the spring of 2005, the Canadian Sheep Breeders Association, the Canadian Sheep Federation, and the Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency laid the foundations for two national scrapie projects. The projects, funded in part by the Advancing Canadian Agriculture Agri-Food program, are designed to reduce the prevalence of scrapie in Canada by encouraging individual producers to take steps to control this disease in their flocks (please read accompanying articles for project details). Given the recent focus on transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE’s) in livestock industries and with scrapie control programs in place in many countries, these projects represent an important step forward in maintaining and developing markets for Canadian sheep and lamb. In May, the final financial agreements were made with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada to secure funding and by summer both fledgling projects were officially underway. Below are brief updates on project progress.

Progress on the Scrapie Flock Certification Program Pilot Project (Project 1)

Although program information was available and a few producers sent in applications for the program early in 2005, many important aspects of the program were not in development until the spring, including:

  • hiring of a project coordinator in April
  • developing a database for tracking inventories of flocks/herds on the program
  • establishing laboratory services. An agreement was made with the Animal Health Laboratory in Guelph in June to analysis brain tissue samples from Ontario flocks/herds. TSE testing labs in other provinces have been approached and agreements should be finalized by the end of the summer.
  • developing a verification protocol detailing how the industry will manage and document the day-to day operation of the program. Industry is responsible for program management, including issuing certificates. To maintain CFIA approval we must be able to confirm with complete and auditable documentation that what we say is happening is happening. The verification protocol is the blueprint for gathering this documentation. The protocol will also help ensure that producers are dealt with in a timely and consistent manner.

With these important aspects of the project completed or nearing completion, provincial sheep associations and the Canadian National Goat Federation put forward names of producers who were interested in joining the pilot project. In June and July, application packages were mailed to 39 producers across the country. Currently, space in still available for flocks on the pilot project and interested producers should contact their provincial organizations or the Scrapie Project Coordinators at the numbers listed below.

Progress on the National Genotyping Survey (Project 2):

  • In June, agreements were reached with five labs from across the country to analyze blood samples.
  • In June and July invitation letters and submission forms were mailed to over 900 purebred sheep producers informing them of this opportunity.
  • By mid July, ~350 samples had been received by the participating labs.
  • As they are received, results will be forwarded to a national database (https://genenovas.ca) being developed by the Nova Scotia Agricultural College (NSAC).
  • We are currently working with NSAC to develop an extension program to interpret genotype results and help producers use the genotype information when making breeding decisions.
  • Sample collection and analysis will be ongoing until November 2006, or until the project objective of 36,000 samples is met (only 35,650 to go!).
Two Sheep

Scrapie Information & Facts

CFIA LOCATIONS

CFIA NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS

59 Camelot Drive
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0Y9
PHONE: (613) 225-2342 / 1-800-442-2342
Fax: (613) 228-6601

 

ATLANTIC HEADQUARTERS

1081 Main St, PO Box 6088
Moncton, New Brunswick, E1C 8R2
PHONE: (506) 851-7400
Fax: Fax: (506) 851-2689

 

ONTARIO HEADQUARTERS

174 Stone Rd W
Guelph, Ontario, N1G 4S9
PHONE: (519) 837-9400
Fax: (519) 837-9766

 

QUEBEC HEADQUARTERS

Room 746-C - 2001 University St,
Montreal, Quebec, H3A 3N2
PHONE: (514) 283-8888
Fax: (514) 283-3143

 

WESTERN HEADQUARTERS

Room 654 - 220 4th Ave SE
Calgary, Alberta, T2G 4X3
PHONE: (403) 292-4301
Fax: (403) 292-5707

 

Project Partners