Feel-good consumer choices made simple

Chicken farmers are identifying the Canadian product consumers trust.
Jessica Heyerhoff, Chicken Farmers of Canada
Monday, 02 January 2017
By Jessica Heyerhoff, Chicken Farmers of Canada
 Chicken Farmers of Canada is making it easy for consumers to choose Canadian chicken at the grocery store.
Chicken Farmers of Canada is making it easy for consumers to choose Canadian chicken at the grocery store.
Consumers want to know where their food comes from and the vast majority of Canadians believe that it is important that domestic chicken be labelled as such.  

Solid values
Based on that feedback, Chicken Farmers of Canada (CFC) has made it easier for consumers to choose Canadian chicken with its new “Raised by a Canadian Farmer” logo, which will be applied to chicken products at the grocery
store level.

By buying chicken with this brand, not only are consumers getting quality Canadian chicken, but they are also supporting farmers they trust – farmers who effectively manage bird health and raise their birds with welfare top-of-mind, who produce safe chicken for Canadians, who preserve the health of the land and their farms and who provide value to Canada, and affordable food to Canadians through supply management.

These are the key values of CFC’s new sustainability program. The first sustainability report will be published online in early 2017.  

These concepts are what make  the Canadian chicken industry sustainable – the hard work, and the good work, of all chicken farmers.  

The sustainability journey is a process of continual improvement. Chicken farmers have come a long way with the implementation of on-farm programs, responsible antibiotic use and growth in the industry which has contributed to the Canadian economy and helped support rural communities.

There will always be more work to do, however. Chicken farmers are striving to continually evolve and work to improve policies and practices that will deliver on the expectations of Canadian consumers.     Read on for a summary of projects and initiatives.


Protecting bird health and welfare
CFC is implementing a national, mandatory Animal Care Program that is enforced and includes third party audits.

The Canadian chicken industry is implementing a comprehensive “Antimicrobial Use Strategy” which involves surveillance, education, research and reduction.

Innovation is the foundation that provides farmers with the information and tools to be able to effectively  manage bird health and welfare.

CFC is a founding member of the Canadian Poultry Research Council (CPRC), the organization through which the majority of research funds are allocated.

The CPRC is dedicated to supporting and enhancing Canada’s poultry sector through research and related activities.

Producing safe chicken for Canadians
  • CFC is implementing a national, mandatory On-Farm Food Safety Assurance Program which has received full recognition from the federal, provincial, and territorial governments.
  • The Canadian chicken industry has an effective and responsive traceability system in place, as well as well as communication and operational plans for dealing with potential disease outbreaks.
Preserving the health of our land
  • Canadian chicken farmers have adopted practices on the farm to reduce environmental impact. Examples include renewable geothermal heating, high efficiency lighting, and improved manure storage to prevent groundwater contamination.
  • The chicken industry’s environmental footprint has the lowest greenhouse gas intensity among all major livestock and poultry sectors in Canada [1].
  • Canadian chicken farms are healthy and vibrant, welcoming new entrants each year to a strong community of family farms.
Providing value through supply management
Supply management allows for the implementation of on-farm programs, for farmers to invest confidently in their operations and for the industry to contribute positively to the Canadian economy.  It also allows chicken farmers to  give back to local communities and for consumers to be assured of a steady supply of fresh, high-quality chicken at a reasonable price.

J. A. Dyer, X. P. C. Vergé, R. L. Desjardins and D. E. Worth, “The Protein-based GHG Emission Intensity for Livestock Products in Canada,” Journal of Sustainable Agriculture, vol. 34, pp. 618-629, 2010.

Note: Adapted from the presentation CFC prepared for the 2016 Canadian Poultry Sustainability Symposium.

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