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Can-Trace, Canada's only national whole-chain tracking and tracing initiative announces the completion of draft standards

Toronto, ON, May 6, 2004 - Can-Trace, a voluntary national whole-chain tracking and tracing initiative celebrates a milestone with the completion of a draft standards document which identifies the minimum requirements from all industry sectors for a whole-chain Canadian traceability (tracking and tracing) program.

Can-Trace was launched in July 2003, with the assistance of the Canadian Council of Grocery Distributors (CCGD), the Food and Consumer Products Manufacturers of Canada (FCPMC), the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers (CFIG), and the Electronic Commerce Council of Canada (ECCC), acting as the secretariat. Can-Trace now has participation from 20 national trade associations, several provincial governments and the federal government.

"The importance and immediacy of completing Can-Trace are essential for Canada's food supply-chain. Drivers such as the US Bioterrorism Act and mandatory Bill 123 on traceability by the province of Quebec are just two of many drivers," said Jane Proctor, Can-Trace's newly elected chair, and Director of Industry Technology & Standardization at the Canadian Produce Marketing Association. "Our discussions with industry show wide-spread support for a national standard that covers the entire food supply chain."

Upon launching Can-Trace, a 'White Paper' was issued to assist in the promotion of industry awareness and discussion. This was quickly followed by two series of cross-country working sessions to consult with various stakeholders, including industry and producers, which culminated in the publication of a 'Roadmap' document in December of last year. The 'Roadmap' addressed issues such as traceability scope (logistical unit and supply chain), traceability business rules (roles and responsibilities) and data capture and management systems (IT solutions).

"We are extremely proud of the amount of work we have covered over these past few months. The Can-Trace Steering Committee should be commended for their foresight in voluntarily recognizing that, in order for Canada to compete on a global basis, we must meet the needs of a safe, efficient supply-chain for not only our exporters but also our importers," said Justin Sherwood, out-going chair and current Vice President Foodservice & Ontario Public Policy, Canadian Council of Grocery Distributors. "Thanks to the dedication and commitment of the Steering Committee, Can-Trace has become the most watched traceability initiative around the globe. We are leading the way!"

Using the 'Roadmap' document, industry convened the following Working Groups: standards, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), business case and communications. Each of these leveraged the food industry's investment in EAN.UCC standards and the global body of traceability knowledge available in the EAN.UCC Meat, Produce and Fish traceability models as well as other industry traceability initiatives. Listed below are the objectives of each working group:

  • Standards – to develop generic, internationally compatible data standards for one up/one down traceability system. The standards will be modular in structure and adaptable for different food and agriculture sectors. The Working Group mandate is also to conduct successful pilot projects.

  • Small and Medium Enterprises – to examine special requirements of SMEs to ensure successful implementation of Can-Trace and to provide recommendations to the Steering Committee on programs and services that could be established in regards to SMEs.

  • Business Case – to examine the incremental costs and benefits of implementing traceability via a credible third party to develop the business case. The Business Case Working Group will validate the business case through pilot projects. It will also be responsible to determine additional research requirements and cost related to each.

  • Communications – to build support with the stakeholder communities in Canada and abroad. To establish an understanding of the initiative and to stimulate a call-to-action by the stakeholders.

Can-Trace was successful in obtaining additional funding from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Can-Trace is close to completing Phase Two of the initiative which is to develop the standards required by industry and government and to pilot test the resulting standards in areas of beef, pork, and fruit and vegetable. These multi-partner pilots studies will be used as a mechanism to ensure the integrity of the standards and any existing gaps.

Can-Trace covers the development of standards for traceability of single and multi-ingredient food products across all multiple food categories and commodities for Canada. With more than 80% of Canada’s food supply chain being exported or imported, it is essential that we develop traceability requirements based on an internationally recognized, cost effective, trusted standard. As Canada’s EAN Member Organization, ECCC continues to assist in the development, implementation and maintenance of the EAN.UCC system, the most widely-used, robust standards proven to improve supply chain management world-wide.

For copies of all Can-Trace reports or a list of the Steering Committee members, please refer to the Can-Trace web site at www.can-trace.org.

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For more information, contact:

Kelly Swinney
Electronic Commerce Council of Canada
Ph: 416.510.8039 ext 2364
Cell: 416 435 5777
Toll: 1.800.567.7084
kellys@eccc.org

About Can-Trace
In July 2003, major Canadian Trade Associations, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Electronic Commerce Council of Canada (ECCC) convened a tracking and tracing initiative named Can-Trace. The objective of Can-Trace is to identify requirements for a whole-chain Canadian food industry traceability (tracking and tracing) program. The Can-Trace initiative is managed by a Steering Committee, composed of trade association and government representatives, funded by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and coordinated by the ECCC.

Can-Trace Mission Statement
The Mission of Can-Trace is to define and develop minimum requirements for a national whole-chain tracking and tracing standard based on the EAN.UCC system. Can-Trace is an industry-led initiative that fosters open dialogue within the supply chain ensuring that the necessary framework for Canadian traceability is designed for implementation.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) is a government organization in the Minister of Agriculture’s portfolio. AAFC’s mandate is to provide information, research and technology, and to create policies and programs to achieve security of the food system, health of the environment and innovation for growth. To learn more about Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, visit www.agr.gc.ca

About ECCC
The Electronic Commerce Council of Canada (ECCC) is the not-for-profit industry led organization that promotes and maintains global standards for the identification of goods and locations and related e-commerce communication such as bar code issuance and maintenance. As an EAN International Member Organization, ECCC represents Canada in the continuing development of the global language of business. To learn more about ECCC, visit www.eccc.org

About CFSQP
ECCC recognizes and appreciates the funding from the Canadian Food Safety and Quality Program (CFSQP). The program works to increase long term growth, employment and competitiveness within Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada as part of their commitment to provide information, research and technology, and policies and programs to ensure security of the food system, health of the environment and to promote innovation for growth

CAN-TRACE PARTICIPATING TRADE ASSOCIATIONS AND GOVERNMENTS
Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada
Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development
Baking Association of Canada
Canada Grains Council
Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance
Canadian Cattle Identification Agency
Canadian Council of Grocery Distributors
Canadian Federation of Agriculture
Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Canadian Meat Council
Canadian On-Farm Food Safety
Canadian Pork Council
Canadian Poultry & Egg Processors Council
Canadian Produce Marketing Association
Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association
Consumers' Association of Canada
Council of Food Processing and Consumer Products
Electronic Commerce Council of Canada
Fisheries Council of Canada
Fond québecois d’adaptation des entreprises agroalimentaires
Food & Consumer Products Manufacturers of Canada
Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives
Ministère de l’Agriculture, Pêcheries, et Alimentation du Québec
Ontario Ministry of Agriculture & Food
Saskatchewan Herb and Spice Association
Wal-Mart

About Can-Trace
In July 2003, major Canadian Trade Associations, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Electronic Commerce Council of Canada (ECCC) convened a tracking and tracing initiative named Can-Trace. The objective of Can-Trace is to identify requirements for a whole-chain Canadian food industry traceability (tracking and tracing) program. The Can-Trace initiative is managed by a Steering Committee, composed of trade association and government representatives, funded by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and coordinated by the ECCC.

Can-Trace Mission Statement
The Mission of Can-Trace is to define and develop minimum requirements for a national whole-chain tracking and tracing standard based on the EAN.UCC system. Can-Trace is an industry-led initiative that fosters open dialogue within the supply chain ensuring that the necessary framework for Canadian traceability is designed for implementation.

    

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