Poultry Service Industry Biosecurity Guide
1. Introduction

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Prevention of disease and disease control are complex issues. The focus of the poultry service industry biosecurity standard is to provide recommendations and industry best practices for routine day-to-day proactive biosecurity. Preventing disease occurrences is far more preferable to and cost effective for the control of a disease and its associated impacts. Appendix 1 provides additional information on disease transmission and the importance of proactive biosecurity to the industry.

This guide was developed, based on a technical risk assessment and a national poultry service industry stakeholder consultation.

The technical risk assessment approach considered both the service sector and the risk of introducing and spreading disease by assessing the following elements:

  • the location within the premises of the service activity,
  • whether live birds will remain after service,
  • disease transmission risk, and
  • subsequent introduction to other premises of the service being provided.

The location and type of service activity have a significant impact on risk. For example, service providers who handle manure and mortalities have a higher potential risk of transferring disease than would an electrician who does not enter the production area and who is not servicing any other farms. On most poultry premises in Canada, live birds will remain on the premises after birds are shipped from a barn or floor of a barn. Although all-in and all-out is practised, it is usually at the floor or barn level, and thus results in a potential risk to the birds that remain on the premises in other barns or in the same barn on another floor.

Throughout the guidance document, activities have been grouped, based on potential risk for a given location and situation; for instance, when handling manure and mortalities, or after a disease alert was issued for an industry- and/or government-defined area where barns will continue in production. The potential for introducing disease could be high if biosecurity measures are not implemented. If a disease alert has been issued, the number of premises that may be infected during the initial phase of investigation is often unknown, and precautionary measures should be implemented to minimize the potential for additional disease spread.

Most often, to be effective, prevention and intervention methods should be carried out in a logical sequence. Thus, adopting one recommendation without first carrying out another may render the action unsuccessful. Service sector recommendations and producer farm-level recommendations are closely linked, and the success of one is dependent on the other.

The national poultry service industry stakeholder consultation provided a practical review of the outcome and recommendations, identification of the current state of biosecurity implementation for various types of service providers, industry best practices, and challenges for the implementation of some recommendations. These challenges include, but are not limited to, communication, confidentiality, defined responsibilities, and industry infrastructure.

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