Canadian Poultry Magazine

PAACO announces Canadian poultry welfare training


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Jul. 25, 2012 – The Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization, Inc. (PAACO) will hold a Canadian version of its popular Poultry Welfare Auditor Training Course in Mississauga, Ontario, on Sept. 25-27, in cooperation with the Poultry Industry Council.

While PAACO has been training poultry welfare auditors since 2006, this will be the first time the course has been offered outside the United States. “Over the years we have had significant interest and participation from Canadians in our poultry courses,” says PAACO Chairman Karen Christensen, PhD, of O.K. Farms, Ft. Smith, Ark., who is also one of the main instructors for the upcoming training. “When we were approached about holding a training in Canada, it seemed a logical next step to broaden our scope and also accommodate the increasing demand from their poultry industry.”

Although the course has been slightly modified to align with the Canada poultry industry structure, the training will adhere to poultry welfare audit criteria that are commonly audited and will be equivalent to the U.S.-based sessions. Welfare will be addressed related to broilers, turkeys and egg layers and includes production segments of breeders, hatchery, grower/producer, transportation and processing.


Classroom instruction will be held the first two days, with the first day providing a background on management and husbandry related to welfare criteria and audits and day two focusing specifically on the process to audit those criteria. On the third day, trainees will go into the field for audit demonstrations at broiler, layer and turkey facilities. At the conclusion of the site visits, participants will complete a closed-book test.

In addition to Christensen, other primary auditing instructors will be Don McIntyre, PhD, PAS, directory of poultry research and technical services for Diamond V Mills; and Leanne Cooley, MSc, poultry welfare specialist and nutritionist for L.H. Gray & Son, Ltd. The instructional staff also includes numerous experts in production, health care, bio-security and processing.

Trainees at PAACO’s auditor certification classes typically represent a broad spectrum of animal welfare – from academia to customers to suppliers. Corporate sponsorship for this training spans various segments of the poultry industry as well – Hybrid Turkeys, New Life Mills, Ontario Broiler Hatching Egg & Chick Commission, Ontario Egg Farmers, Ontario Turkey Farmers, Sobeys, Tim Horton’s and the University of Guelph Ontario Veterinary College Department of Pathology.

Registration is now open on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of $950 (USD) per trainee. Class size is limited, so interested persons are urged to contact PAACO Executive Director Mike Simpson at 402-403-0104; e-mail: as soon as possible.

More information and a registration form are also available on PAACO’s website –

“We are delighted to be able to cooperate and bring this training to Canada,” says Tim Nelson, Executive Director, Poultry Industry Council. “PAACO has long been recognized as the standard of excellence in animal welfare auditing and by holding their poultry welfare auditor course here we will be able to increase the understanding of welfare validation as well as the concentration of PAACO-certified auditors in Canada and thus better service our country’s growing poultry industry.”


PAACO is an organization of five animal industry organizations with extensive expertise on best management practices and current science in animal agriculture. The organization’s purpose is to promote the humane treatment of animals through education and certification of animal auditors as well as the review and/or certification of animal audit instruments, assessments and programs.

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