Rural internet is a major topic of concern and is of interest for rural Canadians. There are reasons to be optimistic about rural internet connectivity, and an article in The Globe and Mail this week, titled “Internet everywhere, but at a cost: The race for the low-Earth satellite market,” highlights how new satellite networks could…
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) says its scientists have confirmed that domestic chickens, turkey, and pigs pose no public health risk for transmitting the virus that causes COVID-19. The CFIA’s research also showed these animals did not carry the virus in tissues used for meat or human consumption. There have been no documented cases of poultry or swine becoming…
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) says its scientists have confirmed that domestic chickens, turkey, and pigs pose no public health risk for transmitting the virus that causes COVID-19.
The CFIA’s research also showed these animals did not carry the virus in tissues used for meat or human consumption.
There have been no documented cases of poultry or swine becoming infected with the virus to date, but the CFIA still wanted to determine their susceptibility and the risk of transmission between animals. The research papers describing what CFIA scientists found were recently made public.
For poultry, the researchers report that they inoculated 10 four-to-six week old leghorn chickens from a CFIA flock in Nepean, Ottawa, and 10 four-to-six week old turkey pullets from a breeder in Manitoba, while maintaining control groups for both. Researchers also inoculated chicken embryos using several different methods and at different stages of development to determine if they might be susceptible prior to hatching.
After not finding any signs of susceptibility, they concluded “SARS-CoV-2 virus does not affect both turkeys and chickens in the current genetic state and does not pose any potential risk to establish in these of species of domestic poultry.”
The CFIA’s findings in pigs were slightly more complicated, as researchers explain that they administered the virus into the nostrils and mouths of 16 eight-week old American Yorkshire crossbred pigs from a high health status farm in Manitoba. The pigs were exposed to the virus at a dose 10 times higher than previous studies.
Contrary to several other studies conducted elsewhere this year, the CFIA’s researchers found the pigs were susceptible — by definition — to the SARS-CoV-2, albeit at low levels and in a lab situation designed to maximize the chance of infection. One pig out of the 16 was found to retain the live virus, while two had detectable RNA in their nasal wash, and another two pigs developed antibodies to the virus.
Most importantly, though, when it comes to possible transmission, the researchers did not detect any live viral shedding, and no RNA was found in swabs or organ samples. CFIA has concluded the virus replicated so poorly in the pigs in the lab that they are not a threat for transmission.
Livestock producers “should continue to follow normal biosecurity measures,” says the agency.
The government of Canada, and the Manitoba provincial government, are providing support to Agriculture in the Classroom — Manitoba (AITC-M), to adjust its educational and outreach resources. The funding, in…
The government of Canada, and the Manitoba provincial government, are providing support to Agriculture in the Classroom — Manitoba (AITC-M), to adjust its educational and outreach resources.
The funding, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, will help with an increased demand for digital, online, and adapted in-person resources.
Federal Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau says the $146,6000 investment will allow AITC-M to continue through the changing times.
“Connecting Canadian youth with the farming and agri-food industry is more important than ever during these challenging times,” Bibeau explains. “This investment will allow Agriculture in the Classroom to help both Manitoba’s teachers and students adapt to new realities as they continue to learn about our innovative agricultural sector.”
The dollar amount is being provided through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP), which will help AITC-M adopt a new service delivery method. In 2019 alone, AITC-M reached nearly 38,000 students through events, programs, and professional development days.
Sue Clayton, executive director of AITC-M says that during this time of uncertainty, the program’s vision to educate students about how their food gets from the farm to their table has never wavered.
“It just needs to be done differently,” Clayton explains. “We believe all students in Manitoba should be agriculturally literate when they graduate. Thanks to the generous support from the Canadian Agricultural Partnership program, we move closer to this goal as more students will be able to expand and deepen their knowledge of Canadian agriculture.”
One of the few agriculture tradeshows still on the calendar for an in-person event has now officially been cancelled. Agri-Trade Equipment Expo was to be held November 11 – 13…
One of the few agriculture tradeshows still on the calendar for an in-person event has now officially been cancelled.
Agri-Trade Equipment Expo was to be held November 11 – 13 at Westerner Park, at Red Deer, Alta. Initially, organizers had committed to hold the event despite COVID-19, but in line with provincial health and safety guidelines.
Although Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy guidelines do allow for trade shows to take place, considering all factors, organizers felt they had no choice but to cancel the show, according to a press release.
“After hundreds of event cancellations over the past six months, we wanted to try everything we could to safely and successfully host Agri-Trade, once we were given the green light for tradeshows by Alberta Health Services. But as we monitor the environment and the ongoing challenges and feedback from exhibitors and stakeholders, we feel that the risks outweigh the reward in pushing forward this year,” says Mike Olesen, CEO for Westerner Park.
While the show itself may have been able to accommodate safety restrictions, many agriculture company corporate policies have restricted travel, impacting both exhibitor participation and attendance for the event.
“With so many concerns around the current situation with COVID-19, many companies have implemented restricted travel policies. With a significant number of companies having to cancel, we felt that the show would not be representative of the Agri-Trade brand. This was not a decision that was made lightly, we left no stone unturned as we were making this decision,” says David Fiddler, Agri-Trade Expo show manager.
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