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Sunday, March 29, 2015


Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food Minister Eric Upshall today called

on the federal government to increase compensation levels for diseased

elk which have to be destroyed by order of the Canadian Food

Inspection Agency.

Earlier this month 473 elk owned by Saskatchewan producers were

ordered destroyed due to tuberculosis being identified in a small

number of animals that were housed in Ontario. The Canadian Food

Inspection Agency decision required destruction of the entire herd to

ensure tuberculosis did not spread. Under current maximum compensation

level of $2,000 a head, producers received only $946,000. Individual

elk can be valued at as much as $9,000-$13,000. The market value of

the herd destroyed, along with their unborn calves, is estimated

between $4-5 million.

Upshall said Saskatchewan supports the actions of the Canadian Food

Inspection Agency in destroying the animals in the interest of public

health and safety, however this case clearly demonstrates that current

compensation levels are inadequate.

"I've written the federal minister that the $2,000 maximum

compensation no way near compensates producers for the market

value of animals destroyed," Upshall said. "We're asking the elk

and deer farming industry be given priority in the next round of

compensation reviews."

Compensation is put in place to ease the burden on producers

whose animals are ordered destroyed. The federal government has

updated the compensation levels for traditional livestock such as

sheep, cattle, horses, poultry and pigs. The federal government

still has not reviewed compensation levels for specialized

livestock such as elk, deer, lamas, alpacas, bear, and ostriches.

"A decision from the federal government on improved compensation

is urgently needed. I am asking for a quick decision from the

federal government on this issue," Upshall said.

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For more information, contact:

Dr. Al Choquer

Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food


Phone: (306) 787-6423
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