2017-18 Departmental Plan
Key risks: things that could affect our ability to achieve our plans and results

Safe food and a prosperous economy for Canadians depend on the CFIA's ability to identify and manage risks to the food supply and to the plant and animal resource base.

The CFIA has always used risk assessment to support decision making. While the Agency plays a regulatory role in managing the many risks related to the food supply and the plant and animal resource base, there are also a number of partners and stakeholders who contribute to managing these risks. These partners include but are not limited to the following:

Creating and maintaining active partnerships to support prevention and protection activities for our food safety and plant and animal health programs will help reduce the overall threat of risks and lessen their impacts. The CFIA is currently involved in a number of partnership initiatives which will support prevention, reduce risks and advance the Agency towards its long term vision.

The Agency has explored improving its capabilities to manage risk and use resources most effectively by experimenting with new risk intelligence tools. The CFIA integrates risk information in its planning and operations in order to reduce risk in delivering its mandate, and to improve how it mobilizes resources in response to new threats.

Risk based inspection

The Agency is improving the way in which it performs inspections in order to be responsive and flexible in a constantly shifting global landscape.

The primary role of an inspector has always been to verify industry's compliance with the requirements of legislation. Risk-based approaches enable inspectors to target activities and areas of greatest risk, not just the end-product or lot by lot inspections.

The CFIA uses various measures to reduce risks to the health of Canadians, Canadian businesses, and the environment. To improve on planning and decision-making, the Agency has developed a comparative risk model that provides information on where it can most effectively reduce risk. Using the model, the CFIA can allocate resources across its different business lines, based on the gravity of the risk. The model was designed in 2015-16 and improved in 2016-17. The CFIA will publish a policy paper on this work in 2017-18.

The CFIA will conduct a baseline analysis in 2017-18 using the results of the risk model. This analysis will also be used in making recommendations for investment and the alignment of resources to risk control measures that the Agency uses. The Agency is also developing a test database that it will use for external peer review and to explore ways to use the data and model to gain new risk insights.

The CFIA also continues to implement its two-year strategy of the establishment risk assessment model. When fully implemented, this model will help us allocate resources for annual inspection plans.

These models, used with new risk intelligence tools, support the Government's commitment to evidence-based decision making and transparency. We will use the information we gain from them to better plan inspections and surveillance decision making. This will help the Agency to deliver best value for public dollars spent.

In 2017-18 we expect to renew the Corporate Risk Profile, which was last fully renewed in 2012, with a refresh of the annex in 2014.

The CFIA will focus on three key risks in 2017-18 in line with those identified in the current Corporate Risk Profile. As outlined in the Operating Context section, external factors influence these risks, including factors such as the global economy, social and environmental changes and advances in science and technology. An internal influence, Agency transformation, will continue to modernize our processes, advance our science, and harness innovation to better serve Canadians and help us keep pace with the constantly advancing modern world.

For each risk, plans have been put in place to mitigate the likelihood and/or impact of the risk. Risks to the Agency's ability to deliver its mandate should decrease, to varying degrees, based on the proposed strategies to respond to risk.

Risks Risk response strategy Link to the department's Programs Link to government-wide and departmental priorities

Managing Change

The ability to effectively manage change on an ongoing basis.

The global evolution of economic, social and environmental factors influence the regulatory and business environment within which the Agency operates.

The Agency must continuously innovate to operate efficiently, while maintaining or increasing how well it does business and fulfills its mandate.

  • Business planning
    • Renew Long-Term Strategic Plan
    • Implement Integrated Risk Management Framework, including the policy and guide, and adopt the Program Management Framework
    • Renew Corporate Risk Profile
    • Continue to implement Business Architecture
    • Develop and implement the Departmental Results Framework to replace the Program Alignment Architecture
  • Optimizing performance
    • Optimize the workplace
    • Modernize analytics
  • Service excellence
    • Develop service model
    • Implement "Ask CFIA"
    • Implement automated guidance document management
    • Improve staffing mechanisms and employee support

P1.1 Food Safety program

P1.2 Animal Health and Zoonotics Program

P1.3 Plant Resources Program

Government priority:
A Safer and Stronger Canada at Home and in the World

Government priority:
Open and Transparent Government

Emergency Management

The ability to prevent and/or respond to multiple simultaneous or large-scale emergencies.

The CFIA has a well-planned emergency preparedness and response capacity. However, threat environments continue to evolve. This requires us to regularly update plans and responses and to find efficiencies to ensure that the Agency can maintain essential business functions during emergencies.

  • Implement the Food Import Strategy
  • Deliver the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Emergency Management Framework
  • Implement the Prevention and Modernization Strategy for plant and animal health
  • Maintain and monitor current emergency management preparedness and response mitigation strategies.

P1.1 Food Safety program

P1.2 Animal Health and Zoonotics Program

P1.3 Plant Resources Program

Government priority:
A Safer and Stronger Canada at Home and in the World

Scientific Capability

The ability to have the scientific capability to adapt and respond in a timely manner.

Advancements in science and technology have increased the complexity of the commodities the Agency regulates. Additionally, there is growing international consensus around the need for the following: common scientific equipment, the use of modern technologies, such as genomics, and common approaches to support industry oversight and the global agri-food trade. The Agency is expected to maintain modern laboratory facilities that reflect these advancements in regulated products and international requirements.

  • Increase focus on prevention through building scientific capacity and partnerships to support decision making, such as
    • Pathogen reduction standards in poultry establishments
    • Canadian Food Safety Information Network (CFSIN) implementation
    • Regulatory Modernization
  • Increase engagement with international partners to share scientific expertise
    • Continue to implement Regulatory Cooperation Council and Beyond the Border
  • Implement the Animal Health Modernization Initiative to achieve the following benefits:
    • Traceability
    • Export Certification Audit
    • Cross-Border Biosecurity
  • Continue to strengthen science capacity through the following:
    • Food Safety Risk Intelligence Framework
    • Laboratory Network Strategy
    • Federal Science & Technology Infrastructure Strategy and Action Plan
    • Surveillance initiatives
    • Open science
    • Genomics Strategy to enhance CFIA's genomics capacity and capabilities for proactive risk response

P1.1 Food Safety program

P1.2 Animal Health and Zoonotics Program

P1.3 Plant Resources Program

Government priority:
A Safer and Stronger Canada at Home and in the World

Government priority:
Inclusive and Sustainable Economic Growth

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