About the Canadian Pork Excellence platform

In order to ensure that on-farm programs continue to reflect the remarkable work of producers and meet the domestic and global consumer demand, Canadian producers and stakeholders have been updating the CQA and ACA programs with the support of provincial member associations and CPC staff.

The updated CQA program is called PigSAFE and the ACA program is called PigCARE. Both are integrated under the Canadian Pork Excellence platform.

Canadian Pork Excellence is the national platform that covers the three on-farm programs: Traceability, Food Safety and Animal Care.

PigSafe | PorcSalubrité
  • Food Safety component
  • New name for the updated Canadian Quality Assurance (CQA) program
  • Includes biosecurity
PigCare | PorcBien-Être
  • Animal Care component
  • New name for the updated Animal Care Assessment (ACA) program
  • Reflects the introduction of the 2014 Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of pigs
PigCare | PorcBien-Être
  • Traceability component
  • Meets federal legislation


Since 2014, producers and stakeholders, supported by staff from CPC and its provincial member organizations, have been updating the CQA and ACA programs

Over 3 years, members of the Management, Food Safety and Animal Care Committees offered their on-farm expertise to update the technical elements and streamline the on-farm implementation of the CQA and ACA programs.

A committee of 14 validators from across the country contributed their expertise to ensure the different ways of raising pigs in Canada and important provincial and regional differences were considered during the updating process. The validators helped ensure that the new program included all farms while ensuring the integrity of the program.

Proposed changes to the PigSAFE and PigCARE programs were vetted through the Management Committee, and then by the CPC Board.


In January 2017, the PigSAFE and PigCARE programs were pilot tested on 73 farms across the country varying in types ranging from 50 to more than 3,000 sow units.

The pilot project looked into whether the PigSAFE and PigCARE programs were easy to understand, easy to use, streamlined, and transparent. While producers gave the new programs an overall rating of 7.1/10, they did identify some concerns that will be addressed before the implementation of the new programs.

A “final draft” of the producer manual was reviewed by a Peer Review Committee.  This producers-only committee provided its recommendations directly to the CPC Board of Directors.


  • PigSAFE | PigCARE was launched in January 2019.
  • Provinces implementing the PS|PC programs must work with their producers to ensure that;
    • Farms that have completed a Full Validation under the CQA/ACA programs in 2019, must join the PS|PC programs at their next Full Validation.
      • No Full CQA validation can be completed after January 2020.
    • Any farms due for a Full Validation in 2020 must do so under the PS|PC programs.
    • CQA/ACA programs will no longer be available as of January 1, 2024.


This project has been funded through the Assurance Systems stream of the AgriMarketing program under Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.