Caring for livestock is one of the most difficult yet essential roles in our economy and society. Raising cattle means feeding people, and that’s a job livestock producers take seriously. From bedding and housing to diet and exercise, there are plenty of considerations cattle producers must make to keep their animals in good health and good spirits.  Read more in this section to learn what livestock producers do to provide their animals with the best lives possible.

Cattle feeders employ best practices in animal health and production. ACFA is heavily invested in:

  • The development of a new Histophilosis vaccine
  • Forage and feed grain research

ACFA works with groups such as:

  • The Canadian Animal Health Coalition
  • The Canadian Animal Health Institute
  • Animal Nutrition Association of Canada
  • Health Products and Food Branch, Health Canada
  • Veterinary Drugs Directorate, Health Canada
  • Policy, Regulatory and International Affairs Division, Health Canada

How roller-compancted concrete (RCC) is improving cattle health in feedlot pens

Alberta’s cattle feeders are always looking for innovations that will contribute to their excellent standards of animal care and improve the sustainability of their operations.

Roller-compacted concrete (RCC) is a product new to the industry that can be used as a base for feedlot pens instead of clay. Jared Clark, of KCL Cattle Company Ltd., near Lethbridge, explains some of the benefits of RCC, in this video:

Benefits of RCC

Roller-compacted concrete was developed in the 1960s, but its application in the feedlot world is new. The benefits for cattle health, feedlot efficiencies and environmental performance are all being studied, but feedlots using the product have already observed:

  • Reduction in pen dust, which improves air quality, as well as water quality in the dugouts near the pens.
  • Reduced loss of clay every time a pen is cleaned. This means less pen maintenance, and also reduces the emissions created by trucks hauling away manure mixed with clay.
  • More room for cattle to roam in the pen, promoting foot health.

BSE Enhanced Surveillance Program

Information on Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) from CFIA


ABVMA logo   Learn more here: Alberta Animal Health Source

January 9, 2016 – Alberta Veterinary Medical Association
As livestock producers, we understand our role in feeding the world and all the responsibilities that come with it. Those responsibilities include the prudent use of antibiotics and keeping up with new regulations.
To find out how these regulations are changing, click here to listen to Talk to the Experts with Dr. Duane Landals archived audio files.

630 CHED Audio Vault
Audio Date: January 9, 2016
Audio Time: 06:05/59:60

Antimicrobial Resistance

Letter to Health Canada from the National Cattle Feeders’ Association re: Antimicrobial Resistance regulatory amendments that states NCFA supports the Antimicrobial Action Plan and the updating of prudent use regulations for veterinary pharmaceuticals. Dr. Joyce Van Donkersgoed, on behalf of the NCFA, worked with Dr. Manisha Mehrotra’s team in the advancement of the initiative.

Food safety, antibiotics and Canadian beef – can the 3 go together?

Farmers play an important role in producing safe, healthy food, while protecting public health. But the care and welfare of their animals is an equally important priority for them. That requires a balance of sound science and responsible practices.

Beef and hormones: what the science says

To find out whether Canadians should be concerned about the use of hormones in beef production, we spoke with Reynold Bergen, science director with the Canadian Beef Research Council (BCRC).

Beef and hormones: should Canadians be concerned?

These days we hear a lot in the media about the use of hormones in food production. In fact, ‘hormone-free’ has become a common advertising theme. To learn more, we spoke with Dr. Joyce Van Donkersgoed of Alberta Beef Health Solutions in Picture Butte, Alberta.

Canadian Beef Cattle On-Farm Biosecurity Standard

CFIA — Canadian Beef Cattle On-Farm Biosecurity Standard

Canada’s beef cattle producers recognize the need for sound on-farm biosecurity practices to manage disease risks in order to protect the health of their herd and operation and, by extension, the national herd and the industry.

The Canadian Beef Cattle On-Farm Biosecurity Standard provides practical and effective on‑farm biosecurity practices which can reduce the risk of disease, when properly applied and followed, and which are of a low cost to the producer to implement. Developed over two years, in consultation with beef cattle producers, industry and government, the Standard is designed specifically for the Canadian beef cattle industry and is applicable to farm-level operations of all types and sizes. Its focus is on practices and procedures that reduce the risk and impact of disease in cattle operations.

The Standard is built on four basic principles of on-farm risk reduction:

  1. managing and minimizing animal movement risks;
  2. managing the movement of people, vehicles, equipment and tools;
  3. managing animal health practices; and
  4. the biosecurity knowledge and training of personnel on the operation’s biosecurity plan.

Each principle has target outcomes that can be achieved in a variety of ways through the Biosecurity Implementation Manual.

The general practices and guidelines of the Standard are voluntary. Adherence to the principles set forth in this Standard can control and reduce the risk and impacts of endemic diseases and of an emerging disease or foreign animal disease (FAD) in the Canadian herd. Managing risk is something beef cattle producers do every day. The Standard is a tool that provides broad guidelines for disease risk management that are practical and science-based, and specific to the beef cattle industry.

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