Canadian Cattle Identification Agency


The Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) is pleased to report on another productive year.


The Board of Directors welcomed several new directors in 2018. The leadership positions remained unchanged with Mark Elford (Saskatchewan Stock Growers) as Chair and Pat Hayes (Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) as Vice-Chair, but the Executive Committee now includes Lyle Miller (Alberta Feeders’ Association) and Howard Bekkering (Alberta Beef Producers) while Doug Sawyer (CCA) returned for a third year.


The Board welcomes new representation from:

  • Canadian Veterinary Medical Association; Dr. Oliver Schunicht
  • Canadian Meat Council; Kim O’Neil (also represented by returning director Dan Gillis)
  • Livestock Markets Association of Canada; Ken Perlich
  • Canadian Sheep Federation; Corlena Patterson
  • Canadian Bison Association; Dean Andres
  • Dairy Farmers of Canada; Gert Schrijver
  • Beef Farmers of Ontario; Kim Sytsma
  • British Columbia Cattlemen’s Association; Duncan Barnett -Les Producteurs de bovins du Québec; Sylvain Bourque.


Returning directors include Reg Schellenberg (CCA), James MacLean (Canadian Livestock Dealers Association), Larry Gerelus (Manitoba Beef Producers) and Ivan Johnson (Maritime Beef Council).


In September, the CCIA Board revamped the strategic plan created in 2015, to better reflect the current situation and prepare for the future of CCIA as one of three responsible administrators in Canada.


With Canadian Agri-Traceability Services (CATS) winding down, their assets were divided up between CCIA and Agri-Traçabilité Québec (ATQ), the responsible administrator in Quebec. Data centre hardware was received in August and installed to add to the already existing Canadian Livestock Tracking System (CLTS) equipment.


CCIA’s Communications department was restructured mid-year for a greater outreach. Under Patt Evans’ coordination, the team now includes a Business Content Writer; Tanner Holthe, and three field staff; Jenn Taplin, Jody Scheirlinck and Lisa Pawlick. The department continues to be supported by Zonita Salazar who has been in her administrative role since 2015. The Communications Team proudly launched the new restored CCIA website in September, alongside a much stronger social media presence and a new approach to print advertising.


Several Canadian livestock events included CCIA as speakers, workshop instructors or within tradeshow settings. We always embrace the opportunity to inform regulated parties on how to prepare for proposed regulatory amendments, how to use the CLTS and best traceability practices. Our American neighbours also turned to CCIA’s experience to learn more about the implementation of an animal identification program and the mandate of a responsible administrator in Canada. Lastly, our General Manager, Anne Brunet-Burgess was honored to speak at the Technical Beef Symposium in Beijing, China as well as the Cross-Border Livestock Health committee during the Pacific North West Economic Region Summit.


The Tag Retention II followed up on the successful national field trial that was concluded in 2016. While the trial results were generally good over all with regards to retention and readability of the devices, complaints continued to be received by CCIA about poor retention, particularly with regard to deterioration of the male stud portion of the tag. Phase II investigated the premature failure of the plastic in the male back using accelerated aging of the plastic. Testing was conducted at a certified material testing laboratory. Samples from each brand were subjected to 2,500 hours of UV light in an environmental chamber. At prescribed intervals, samples were removed from the chamber and the strength of the tag was tested using a tensile strength apparatus. At the conclusion of the testing, UV was ruled out as a factor in the premature aging and material failure of the male backs. Further testing is required, moving the project into Phase III.


 CCIA’s operations and supplementary activities such as Research and Development projects are funded through the sales of animal indicators (tags). Sales achieved directly from the webstores generate a more favorable margin, while allowing for retail price equality across the country, improved data integrity and the accessibility to all five brands. To date, direct to-producers tag sales represent five per cent of the total sales in spite of aggressive print advertising in most cattle publications over the last two years. In the last quarter of 2018, CCIA took a different approach to promote the webstore by launching a digital campaign directing cyber traffic to the store landing page.


In July, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) announced that the anticipated date for the publication of draft regulations pertaining to livestock traceability in Part I of the Canada Gazette had been revised to spring 2019 from fall 2018  However, the preparation measures did not slow down at CCIA. We continued urging regulated parties to obtain a Premises Identification (PID) from their respective provincial government and to follow with the additional step of updating their CLTS account to include their PID number. Aside from the many CLTS database enhancements and CLTS MOBO —the mobile phone application used to capture regulated data in a user-friendly, species specific fashion— CCIA’s preparedness also comprised Client Support Services. These services are currently delivered by six agents, half of them fluent in French. The department has been reviewed for service quality, staff performance, phone system and procedures. The audit report also suggested ways to efficiently expand the services when the need arises.


 CCIA reinforced its long-standing relationships with the Canadian Bison Association and the Canadian Sheep Federation with the signing of updated long-term agreements for both bison and sheep. CCIA has been selected as the Responsible Administrator for cervid and goats, and agreements have been signed with Canadian National Goat Federation and Canadian Cervid Alliance in anticipation of new regulations coming into effect. CCIA has also spent considerable time transforming its existing relationship with the Canadian dairy sector as the sector’s proposal to have the Canadian Dairy Network become the responsible administrator and database service provider,  was retained by CFIA. Numerous discussions took place over 2018 to define a statement of work for dairy producers’ regulatory and voluntary data to be transferred from CLTS to a new dairy database named DairyTrace, once complete. The on-going flow of both beef and dairy livestock data captured at intermediate or terminal sites is under review with the common goal of reporting in the least disruptive manner for regulated parties.


For more information, please visit the CCIA website at


Respectfully submitted,

Anne Brunet-Burgess

General Manager, CCIA


© 2019 Canadian Cattlemen's Association