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Animal Health Compensation - What to expect when an animal is ordered destroyed

The CFIA's commitment

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is dedicated to working directly with affected producers so that the compensation process runs as smoothly as possible. We are committed to maintaining a co-operative, respectful relationship for everyone involved.

Animals or things affected by a disease may be ordered destroyed by the CFIA under the Health of Animals Act. Such an order, while unfortunate and difficult for all concerned, is often necessary to keep humans and other animals safe, and to keep export markets open.

CFIA Compensation: what's covered?

The CFIA may compensate producers for:

  • animals ordered destroyed;
  • other things ordered destroyed, such as contaminated feed or animal products; and
  • the disposal costs of animals ordered destroyed.

Other compensation

Beyond the CFIA's compensation, other financial assistance may be available through programs administered by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), and, in some cases, provincial or territorial governments. Costs and losses considered by these programs may include business disruption and other extraordinary costs incurred due to disease. For more information, contact your local AAFC office and/or your provincial/territorial agriculture ministry office (contact information provided at the end of this brochure).

CFIA compensation: how much may be available?

For animals ordered destroyed, the CFIA bases compensation amounts on the animal's market value (up to a maximum amount as stipulated in the Compensation for Destroyed Animals Regulations). For other things ordered destroyed, compensation amounts are based on the market value at the time of destruction.

CFIA compensation: how does the process work?

1. Initial visit

When a CFIA district veterinarian determines that a disease is present or suspected on your farm, he or she may issue an "order for destruction." This document outlines what will be destroyed and, therefore, what compensation may be awarded.

Depending on the situation and the number of animals involved, the district veterinarian who issues the order may arrange for a compensation assessment team or a single evaluator to visit your property. The team usually includes a CFIA veterinarian and two evaluators - one chosen by you (the owner) and the other by the CFIA. All evaluators have expertise in the market value of the classes and breeds of animals.

In emergency situations the compensation process may be slightly different in order to react as quickly as possible to the emerging animal health situation.

2. Compensation assessment

  • In order to receive compensation for your animal, you must present your individual animals for evaluation by the assessment team. You must also have supporting evidence of the animals' value. This supporting material may include current animal inventories, receipts, sales records and registration papers.
  • The amount of compensation is based on an animal's market value (up to a maximum amount as stipulated in the Compensation for Destroyed Animals Regulations). Compensation amounts are intended to reflect the reasonable depreciated value that an owner could expect to receive for the animal or thing on the current Canadian market.

Evaluators determine market value in two different ways:

Method #1: This method assesses the cost of replacing an animal based on factors such as genetic background, age and production records. This method is used for animals commonly traded on the market such as cows, sheep or cervids.

Method #2: This method uses an economic formula to determine an animal's replacement value based on its production/life cycle at the time of its destruction. This method may be used for animals such as, egg-laying and hatching-egg birds.

Important information to note:

  • Animal owners may be awarded market value, minus any value received through the salvage of the carcass.
  • If the animal's market value exceeds the maximum compensation allowed, the owner may be awarded the maximum compensation amount.
  • Compensation may be awarded for individual animals.

For more information on compensation maximums by species, please refer to the Health of Animals Act and the Compensation for Destroyed Animals Regulations.

3. CFIA compensation payments and appeals

Once animals have been evaluated, you will receive a signed copy of a compensation evaluation form. If you think the amount awarded for compensation is unreasonable, you may appeal the decision within three months of the evaluation. The three-month time limit starts on the date that you receive the evaluation form.

Appeals should be sent to:
Registrar of Appeals
Federal Court of Canada
Supreme Court Building
Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON  K1A 0H9

Normally, you can expect payment in 6-10 weeks. However, sometimes there are circumstances that can create delays. If you have questions about the status of your compensation payments, please contact the Canadian Food Inspection agency.

For more information on CFIA compensation

Health of Animals Act

Compensation for Destroyed Animals Regulations

Reportable Diseases Regulations

Contact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency

By telephone: 1-800-442-2342
For the hearing and speech impaired (TDD/TTY): 1-800-465-7735

How do I get more information?

Contact your CFIA Area office:

Atlantic Area: 506-851-7651

Quebec Area: 514-283-8888

Ontario Area: 519-837-9400

Western Area: 403-292-4301

You can find your local CFIA District Office

  • on the CFIA website at
  • by consulting the blue pages of your local phone directory.

Additional information