Premises Identification for Livestock and Poultry in Canada - Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is a premises?

A. A premises is any parcel of land on which animals, plants or food are grown, kept, assembled or disposed of.

Examples of livestock and poultry premises include:

  • farms, stables
  • feedlots
  • pastures
  • community pastures
  • hatcheries
  • abattoirs
  • assembly yards
  • auction, livestock sale facilities
  • rendering plants
  • zoos, petting zoos
  • exhibitions, fairgrounds, racetracks, competition facilities
  • veterinary hospitals, clinics or labs
  • insemination centres
  • livestock and poultry research facilities

Note: A premises will only receive one premises ID number regardless of the number of contacts, species or premises types on the parcel of land.

Q. What is a premises identification number?

A. It is a unique identifier, based on national standards, that is assigned to a premises within a province or territory.

Q. What are the benefits?

A. Knowing where livestock and poultry are located and how to reach owners, operators, producers or emergency contacts is key to a rapid, accurate and cost-effective response to animal health or food safety issues. Premises identification is a critical component in developing a national traceability system, as it is one of the three basic elements, along with animal identification and movement.

Premises ID helps to:

  • allow for rapid notification of livestock and poultry stakeholders
  • prepare for, manage and reduce the impact of an animal health or food safety issue, such as disease, flood or sanitary issues
  • track and trace animals in the event of an emergency
  • better manage emergencies to help maintain market access

Q. What information is needed?

A. Basic land and contact information will be required:

  • Legal land description or geo-referenced coordinates;
  • Contact and/or owner name and coordinates; and name of operation, if available;
  • Premises type (e.g. farm, abattoir, etc.); and,
  • What animals, plants and food have been kept, assembled, disposed of or grown in the last year on the premises.

Information will be verified to ensure accuracy and is protected under privacy legislation. The information will only be used for the purposes for which it was collected.

Q. How will the information be used?

A. Information will be used to prepare for, respond to, or recover from, a disaster, animal disease or food safety issue. Complete and accurate contact information is essential for officials to deal with these situations.

Q. How do I get a premises identification number?

A. The provinces and territories are responsible for administering premises ID and are implementing the program according to their own requirements. For more information, or to find a contact in your province or territory, please visit

Q. How much does it cost to apply for a premises identification number?

A. There is no cost to participate.

Q. What livestock and poultry are included in this program?

A. The first priority is to identify premises with cattle, hogs, sheep and poultry.

While the list may vary by province, examples of other species include:

  • Beef cattle
  • Dairy cattle
  • Bison
  • Sheep
  • Hogs
  • Wild boar
  • Goat
  • Horse
  • Donkey, mule
  • Farmed deer, red deer
  • Farmed elk
  • Ostrich, emu, nandu
  • Farmed rabbits
  • Laying hen (table egg, broiler and hatching egg)
  • Broiler chicken
  • Farmed turkey
  • Farmed ducks
  • Farmed quail
  • Farmed geese
  • Farmed pheasants
  • Exotic/show birds
  • Fur farm – mink
  • Fur farm – fox
  • Fur farm – other
  • Farmed bees
  • Llama, vicuna, alpaca
  • Aquaculture: salmon
  • Aquaculture: mollusks
  • Aquaculture: crustaceans
  • Aquaculture: fish other than salmon
  • Other livestock or poultry

Q. Who do I contact if I have more questions?

A. A list of provincial contacts is available at the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA)

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