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uNwaNTed by wuyunyi


									New Rules FoR The
The subject of horse slaughter has
been a hot topic of debate in North
america for many years and the
subject has become more compli-
cated with new rules being intro-
duced in Canada later this year.
By anna Meyers

     A tired racehorse stands in the crossties and
reality sets in for his connections. The gelding
can’t physically race any longer. His problems
prevent him from being re-trained in another
discipline. As a gelding he has no breeding
value. His demeanour is such that he would be
unsuitable as a companion horse. Thus the
question arises - what do you do with an
unwanted horse?
     Before you decide to send the horse off to
auction or for meat processing, you need to
become informed on the latest directive from
the Canadian government. On January 28 of this
year the Canadian Food Inspection Agency
(CFIA) announced the implementation of a new
Meat Hygiene Directive that affects all horses
both domestic and imported which may impact
options and the salvage value of the horse.

     As of July 31, slaughter facilities will
                                                 New regulations in Canada which will come into effect on July 31 of this year
only be allowed to process horses that           will drastically change the rules for disposal of unwanted horses.
have complete health records dating back
six months. Horses being sent to or sold for
meat processing from that day forward                 As it stands, there are three different         Again, it is important to distinguish
must have records documenting all medica-       lists that have or will be generated (and       that these products are not banned for use
tions administered from February 1, 2010        could be subject to change) and can be          from a medical perspective but simply
and forward. To help horse owners, the          referred to at the Canadian Food Inspec-        may disqualify a horse to be eligible for
Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)          tion Agency (CFIA) website cited.               meat production. At this time, the CFIA is
has created an Equine Identification Docu-            It currently lists medications that are   indicating that the Equine Identification
ment that can be printed from the CFIA          not permitted for use in horses slaugh-         Document will require that horses have
website at:         tered for food. Many are common and             not been treated with non-permitted
     The Equine Identification Document         effective drugs used to treat a multitude       drugs during six months prior to slaughter.
(EID) has several elements:                     of conditions. Some medications that            However, it is important to note that a
• Identification information similar to         appear on the list include but are not lim-     longer certification period may eventually
  what is currently submitted to Standard-      ited to BNPH® and BNP® ophthalmic oint-         be required.
  bred Canada with the addition of picture      ments used to treat eye conditions,                   A second list of ‘Essential Veterinary
  identification;                               clenbuterol (Ventipulmin® Solution or           Drugs’ permitted in equine intended for
• Record of diagnosed illnesses;                Syrup) primarily used as a bronchodilator,      food production but requiring a six month
• Records of veterinary drugs or vaccines       stanozolol or boldenone (Equipoise®)            withdrawal also appears on the CFIA web-
given that are not permitted for use in         anabolic steroids, cloramphenicol, nitrofu-     site. Drugs that appear on this list include
food animals;                                   rans such as nitrofurazone or furacin used      but are not limited to: acepromazine
• Records of veterinary drugs or vaccines       as a topical antibiotics, estradiol (a female   (Atravet®) commonly used for sedation as
given with known withdrawal times;              hormone), and phenylbutazone products           well as propofol (Diprivan® the drug
• Records of all other drugs or vaccines        such as Butazone® also) commonly used           allegedly used by Michael Jackson),
administered;                                   as an anti-arthritic or anti-inflammatory       ephedrine or antihistamines used to
• Owner declaration.                            drugs.                                          relieve respiratory congestion, analgesics

March 2010 • The Harness Edge
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fentanyl, buprenorphine and morphine,
anti-antimicrobials        ticarcillin   and     “In actual fact, we are a country that has denied that horses go for meat but
amikacin, the common EPM (Equine Pro-            when the BSE crisis hit, horses were the largest by weight meat export in
                                                 Canada.” – Dr. Mary Bell
tozoal Myeloencephalitis), medication
pyrimethamine and anti-fungals such as
griseofulvin, ketoconazole and micona-          Netherlands, France, Germany, Italy,               There is no doubt that the horse meat
zole.                                           Switzerland, and Austria as well as many      processing industry in Canada has grown
     A third list of veterinary drugs for use   Asian and South American countries.           substantially over the last few years.
in horses intended for food production for           Generally speaking, it is thought that        In 2005 and 2006, approximately
which withdrawal times have been estab-         horse meat processed in North America is      50,000 horses each year were slaugh-
lished is currently being worked on and         of better quality due to the nutrition and    tered in Canada. In late 2006, the U.S.
should be available by April.                   overall body condition of animals             House of Representatives passed the
     There are many layers and perspec-         processed. As well, horse meat increased      American Horse Slaughter Prevention
tives to this issue and many implications.      in popularity particularly in Europe with     Act. As a result, horse slaughter plants
Let’s first examine why and how this direc-     the BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopa-       (in the U.S.) began to close their doors
tive came to be.                                thy or mad cow disease) and foot and          with the last one closing in September,
                                                mouth epidemics that occurred in the          2007.
          HORSE MEAT AND THE                    United Kingdom during the last two                 Many horses that were once sent to
         EUROPEAN UNION (EU)                    decades. Especially since there is a causal   or sold for processing in the United States
     While horse meat consumption is not        association between a human disease           are now transported to Canada or Mexico
readily acceptable in most Canadian cul-        called Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and BSE      to slaughter. Agriculture and Agri-Food
tures, it is accepted and highly sought         outbreak in cattle.                           Canada statistics back this up and show
after in many European cultures. Horse               “In actual fact, we are a country that   horse slaughter numbers rose to 79,613 in
meat is considered to be a lean, iron-rich      has denied that horses go for meat but        2007 which represented an increase of
red meat that is low in fat and cholesterol     when the BSE crisis hit, horses were the      58.5 per cent over the previous year with
and is typically a more economical pur-         largest by weight meat export in Canada,”     approximately 41 per cent being imported
chase than beef or pork. It is popular in       says Dr. Mary Bell of Mannington Equine       from the United States to Canada for
European countries like Belgium, the            Services, Puslinch, Ontario.                  slaughter.

March 2010 • The Harness Edge
     In 2008, the number of horses slaugh-
tered in Canada rose to 112,957, a 41.9 per
cent increase over 2007 totals. USDA
export statistics show a total of 77,073        In 2008, the number of horses slaughtered in Canada
horses being brought in for slaughter
from the United States. This represents         rose to 112,957, a 41.9 per cent increase over 2007
68.2 per cent of the total horses slaugh-
tered in our country. Trends for the first
                                                totals. USDA export statistics show a total of 77,073
half of 2009 show that the number of
horses slaughtered is basically on par with
                                                horses being brought in for slaughter from the United
what was reported monthly in 2008.              States. This represents 68.2 per cent of the total
     “The issue I see right now is the
dumping issue from the United States            horses slaughtered in our country.
that’s my primary concern. There are
100,000 horses coming from over the bor-
der which is more than our entire produc-
tion,” declares Edward Kendall, an Equine                CANADA’S RESPONSE                   trade association that represents animal
Canada representative.                             The Canadian Food Inspection              health companies. Veterinarians will also
     To have a better understanding of        Agency (CFIA) took the opportunity to          have to be more meticulous in their record
the impact that the American Horse            address new requirements by setting up a       keeping and descriptives.
Slaughter Prevention Act had on the           working group. Edward Kendall is the                 “There is a bigger problem, when you
Canadian horse meat processing industry       chair of the Equine Canada’s ID and trace-     look at the horse industry from coast to
consider that in 2006 there were only         ability committee and was asked to partic-     coast. You have such a range of responsi-
three federally inspected plants that pro-    ipate as a member of the CFIA working          bilities for giving horse health treatments
duced horse meat across Canada. Today         group.                                         to horses. In some parts of the country,
there are six: one in British Columbia, two        “It started as a group of six and grew    horse health treatments and drugs are
in Alberta, one in Ontario and two based      to over 20 people which included repre-        almost exclusively given by vets while in
in Quebec.                                    sentatives from several branches of CFIA,      other parts of the country they are admin-
     A surprising figure reveals that         Agriculture Agri-Food Canada (their pro-       istered by vets, trainers, staff of trainers or
annual meat exports primarily for Euro-       grams department), Health Canada, the          owners,” explains Vel Evans of Strategic
pean food markets exceeds $60 million. As     processing sector both in Western and          Equine, a company who has had extensive
well, domestic consumption of horse meat      Eastern Canada, provincial associations        experience in conducting national and
averages about 300 tonnes annually or 10      (horse user groups) and of course national     provincial horse surveys.
to 20 per cent of the total meat produced.    representation,” explains Kendall.                   “There is so much diversity in who has
                                                   The Canadian Veterinary Medical           the responsibility for administering horse
   NEW FOOD SAFETY REQUIREMENTS               Association (CVMA) was brought in late in      health treatments. In a broad sense, it is
                IN EUROPE                     the process.                                   extremely variable from sector to sector
     In April of 2009, the European Com-           While the Canadian Food Inspection        and coast to coast,” says Evans. Add
mission (EC) informed all countries which     Agency was spurred by changes with Euro-       another dimension in that there are med-
export horse meat to the European Union,      pean regulations, according to Kendall, it     ications that are prescribed by a veterinar-
that new food safety requirements would       established interim measures to set new        ian but not administered by a
be required to ensure that slaughtered        Canadian standards for processing horse        veterinarian.
horses had not been treated with sub-         meat.                                                “Canada and the United States are
stances prohibited by the European Com-            “The new standard for Canada is that      moving towards something called On
mission during their lifetime, and that the   you must have at least a six month health      Farm Safety Programs. These are intended
meat be safe for consumption. In other        record for any horse that you intend to        to be long-term programs that monitor
words, animals entering Europe who            put forward for processing.”                   the health of animals that may enter the
might at some point enter the food chain                                                     food chain at one point. That would be
had to adhere to the same regulations as                     DECLARATION                     more of a permanent solution. But of
European producers.                                “As it stands, the owner has to make      course, in order to get some kind of per-
     The European Commission (EC) pro-        a declaration, which means the owner has       manent solution in place, it takes time,”
posed a three year transition period dur-     to have a lot of history on his horses. That   adds Kendall.
ing which minimum measures such as            can be a challenge, and owners will have
providing health records to cover treat-      to be more diligent in recording informa-       DRUGS NOT PERMITTED FOR USE LIST
ments given the last six months prior to      tion,” says Jean Szkotnicki of the Cana-           There is no question that there will
slaughter be implemented.                     dian Animal Health Institute (CAHI), a         continue to be a list of medications not

                                                                                                             The Harness Edge • March 2010

permitted for use in horses designated for          “In an ideal world, you would have        finding some science based solutions.”
meat consumption. What could possibly          MRLs on all drugs but we haven’t required
change might be the particular items on        that level of safety data for equine prod-            KNOWN WITHDRAWAL TIMES
the list.                                      ucts not treating them as a slaughter ani-           In April 2010, the CFIA expects to
      As it stands, there are some discrep-    mal in the past,” explains Skotnicki. The      have a list of drugs that are safe to be
ancies that exist between what is currently    ‘essential drug’ list (those requiring a six   given or fed to equines that may be used
not permitted for use in Europe and what       month withdrawal) is one that was gener-       for food. Appropriate withdrawal periods
appears on Canada’s drugs not permitted        ated from Europe and perhaps we need to        will be provided for these products. Liter-
for use in horses slaughtered for food list.   have a more thorough look at that list.”       ature has suggested that owners consult
      For example, in the European Union,           Canadian gFARAD Services already          with their veterinarian if drugs that can be
clenbuterol (Ventipulmin®) a potent            exists to provide expert-mediated decision     safely given or fed to horses that may be
bronchodilator can be used and an MRL          support for any inquiry related to drug or     used for food do not appear on the list.
(minimum residue level) has been estab-        chemical residues in food animals. Cana-             Some veterinarians have expressed
lished but in Canada it is a drug that may     dian gFARAD personnel also assist veteri-      concern over being charged with this
not be permitted for use in horses             narians or government agencies with            responsibility citing that they are uncom-
intended for human consumption.                inquiries and have been recommending           fortable with the notion of providing
      If we are attempting to meet EU stan-    guidelines for withdrawal for many ani-        clients with withdrawal times particularly
dards, it is possible that some of these       mals. It is hoped that organizations like      with medications or nutraceuticals they
drugs may be moved into different cate-        this can help provide assistance to ensure     are unfamiliar with or have not dispensed.
gories given time and it’s important to        the lists are thorough and complete.                 “There are so many products that can
continue monitoring the lists provided by           “To the best of my knowledge,             be bought over the counter and used
the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.           equine practitioners are also looking at       without a veterinarian prescribing them,”
      As a horse owner, if any of these sub-   those lists that have been provided by the     surmises Szkotnicki.
stances appear on the Equine Identifica-       Canadian Food Inspection Agency. We                   There is concern about the long com-
tion Document that currently covers six        need to know what products we have in          plicated lists that are currently available
months of health records, then the animal      the market place that we can actually pro-     which owners will have to decipher. With
will be ineligible for meat processing. Rec-   vide a withdrawal time,” says Szkotnicki.      a number of essential drugs requiring a six
ognize that in the future, health records           “The Veterinary Drug Directorate is       month withdrawal it is Kendall’s sense
covering a longer period of time and pos-      working on that and looking for sources        that many of these horses will be held in
sibly the lifetime of the horse may eventu-    of information from other countries.           some kind of quarantine station for a
ally be called for. Perhaps the medications    There is some data available and maybe         number of months prior to being
chosen for treatment may need to be eval-      some products can be on this positive list     processed.
uated to see if alternatives are available.    that can be administered but according to            “We have to be able to understand
      “There are MRLs (minimum residue         an actual scientific based withdrawal time     what alternative drugs can be used, ones
limits) that are established for many          rather than a default withdrawal period        that are cost effective and practical,” says
classes of drugs but not for every class of    of six months.                                 Szkotnicki.
drug so they (CFIA) elected to require a six        “We have to be focused on the fact              “I would like to see if the EU has spec-
month withdrawal period to capture             that there has been a great deal of back-      ified qualifications that only apply to their
everything that might possibly be in a         ground done, the current lists give us         horses, for instance, if they are going to
horse’s system,” says Kendall.                 something to comment on and we look to         decide they have a six month withdrawal
                                                                                              for products which they recognize have no
                                                                                              withdrawal times. I would like to see the
                                                                                              option for processors to sell to other mar-
                                                                                              kets with avoidance of contamination in
                                                                                              the processing line with a second set of
“The issue I see right now is the dumping issue from                                          regulations that permits withdrawal times
                                                                                              for those products that the European
the United States that’s my primary concern. There                                            Union chooses not to recognize,” says
are 100,000 horses coming from over the border which                                                According to Szkotnicki, it is hoped
                                                                                              that there is willingness with the Canadian
is more than our entire production.” – Edward Kendall                                         Food Inspection Agency and the VDD to
                                                                                              dialogue and accept assistance with indus-
                                                                                              try stakeholders so that scientific solutions
                                                                                              can be developed.

March 2010 • The Harness Edge
              HORSE WELFARE
      When asked about how these
changes might affect horse welfare,
Kendall didn’t hesitate to respond. “I           “The other thing that I think is going to happen is that
don’t think that we are moving back-
wards when it comes to horse welfare, I          a lot of horses that have been long term performance
think we are moving more towards a con-
tinuous monitoring situation and from a          horses or racehorses will simply not be eligible to be
welfare point of view, it is only going to
get better.”
                                                 processed for meat.” – Dr. Mary Bell
      The question is what will happen to
horses that end up at livestock auctions
after July 31, 2010.
      “Many horses will not be sold if they    “This is my personal opinion and my opin-        step for the CFIA is to move in that direc-
do not have the certificate (EID). The cer-    ion only, is that we will have to find other     tion, then that’s positive.”
tificate will have to come with them. Of       ways to have these animals disposed.”                 Equine Canada will be moving for-
course, I am concerned about this from an                                                       ward in 2010 and conducting a National
animal welfare standpoint,” states Bell.                EQUINE IDENTIFICATION                   Traceability Readiness Study to determine
She goes on to explain. “The price of horse         The European Union wants to make            the current status of the industry to eval-
meat dropped precipitously with the flood      sure that for the meat to their public, that     uate the impact of these kinds of regula-
of horses coming in from the United            there is a system in place in Canada to          tory changes on the industry.
States.                                        monitor what drugs are given, in addition             A pilot project will also be conducted
      “My concern is the United States has     to spot testing.                                 in Ontario in partnership with the Ontario
a problem with the unwanted horse. I do             “We have to recognize that the single       Racing Commission and OnTrace Agri-
not want us to be the dumping ground for       solution to all this is a National Identifica-   food Traceability. That project will take a
U.S. problems thus creating a problem for      tion program. Probably what we need to           selected group of horse owners in the
our country. I feel horrible about what has    do is market very heavily to our horse           province and determine the number of
happened to the plight of the unwanted         owners that this will be to our advantage        movements of their horses and number of
horse in the United States but we have to      certainly in this instance, in biosecurity,      horse health treatments over a 90 day
be custodians of our own horses,” says         traceability, an advantage in determining        period to try and develop some kind of
Bell.                                          what horses do throughout their life, to         handle on the cost of the industry for mov-
      Evans has had a chance to complete       know what happens to horses after they           ing ahead with a traceability system.
some work that can provide insight as she      finish their careers. It is going to be an            The ultimate outcome in 2010 is for
was involved in completing a provincial        excellent tracking tool,” says Bell.             industry to develop a detailed action plan
survey in the province of Saskatchewan in           “The industry was ready to move for-        for how traceability would roll out for
the fall of 2009. “Anecdotal information       ward with traceability systems three years       Canada. The response from the CFIA to
suggests that the auction houses have          ago and the federal government has put           the European Union in late 2009 included
almost closed down because there is insuf-     that on hold and placed the industry in a        a commitment to have some kind of trace-
ficient value in horses delivered to make it   situation where we are forced to respond         ability system in place in Canada by
viable and worth running auctions.             under very tight timelines,” says Vel Evans.     2012/2013.
      “Feedlots are already established.            “Equine Canada spent from 2002 to
They have been in existence for certain        2006 developing the CanEQUID specs in                        MOVING FORWARD
markets, for example horses that go to         consultation with industry, and these were            We have to recognize that times have
Japan or those that go directly to process-    presented back in 2006. It wasn’t that the       changed. Increased restrictions to ensure
ing,” says Bell. “There are some excellently   industry didn’t put forward a plan but           safe food supply, traceability, biosecurity
run feedlots. There will be more feedlots.     government put other species ahead of            in the face of disease outbreaks that
      “The other thing that I think is going   the horse industry and so the industry was       threaten movement of horses, are
to happen is that a lot of horses that have    put under the gun to come up with a              needed. We are well on our way to devel-
been long term performance horses or           short-term plan.                                 oping and implementing systems that can
racehorses will simply not be eligible to be        “There are some challenges with the         help achieve these goals.
processed for meat.”                           current system as it stands. It is presently a        As horse owners, it is important to
      “Most people who are giving these        paper-based system. Right from the begin-        understand the implications. While no
drugs don’t have any notion that these         ning the industry said a paper-based sys-        one likes to think of what happens to their
animals are eventually going to go into        tem is the most onerous system to work           horse(s) years down the road, the deci-
processing and as a result those animals       with. Industry is behind an electronic           sions we make today can influence what
may be excluded,” summarizes Kendall.          based system like CanEQUID, if the next          happens to them tomorrow.

                                                                                                               The Harness Edge • March 2010

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Receive spot colour for an extra $15 per column inch.                                              The Harness Edge • March 2010
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                                                                Grand Circuit Events
#6) Kentucky Futurity #119                                                                             #7) Tattersalls Pace 2011
     Foals of 2008 to Race in 2011                                                                          Foals of 2008 to Race in 2011
                                                     PAYMENT DUE FOR EVENTS #6 & 7
                                                                                                       OPEN                      FILLY
                         March 15                                                                      $500                      $300
                         a) Supplemental Payment due March 15                                          $1,000                    $500
 a) Those horses not nominated to these events by the yearling payment may be made eligible by making the two-year-old supplemental payment of the fees designated above.

#8) International Stallion Stakes #108                                                                 #9) Bluegrass Series #36
           Foals of 2008 to Race in 2010                                                                      Foals of 2008 to Race in 2010
            PAYMENT SCHEDULE EVENT #8                                                                      PAYMENT SCHEDULE EVENT #9
March 15                                                        $300                           *March 15                                                         $350
April 15                                                        $400                            April 15                                                         $450
May 15                                                          $500                            May 15                                                           $550
b) Supplemental Payment due March 15                            $1,000                         b) Supplemental Payment due March 15                              $550
       b) Ineligible two year olds may be supplemented these events in 2010 by making the payment designated above on March 15 plus the April 15 and May 15 payments.
                                                                     Future Eligibility:
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                                                THE ALLERAGE FARMS SERIES
                                             Early Closing Events For All Divisions Of Older Horses
#10) OPEN PACE                                                                                                      #11) OPEN TROT*
$10,000G Eliminations: Saturday, October 16                                                                         $10,000G Eliminations: Saturday, October 16
$150,000E Final: Saturday, October 23                                                                               $150,000E Final: Saturday, October 23
                                                                PAYMENT SCHEDULE EVENTS #10 & 11
                                                                March 15:               $1,500
                                                                April 15:               $2,000
                                                                Declaration Fee:        $2,500
#12) OPEN MARE PACE                                                                                                 #13) OPEN MARE TROT*
No Eliminations                                                                                                     No Eliminations
$80,000E Event: Saturday, October 23                                                                                $80,000E Final: Saturday, October 23
                                                                PAYMENT SCHEDULE EVENTS #12 & 13
                                                                March 15:               $1,000
                                                                April 15:               $1,500
                                                                Declaration Fee:        $1,500

                                  Elimination winners, in an order determined by lot, may select their post-positions for the final.
            *The Red Mile reserves the right to invite one horse to race in each of the trot finals subject to payment of all fees associated with this series.


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