Canadian Carcass Poultry Grading Program – Inspection Manual for Graded Poultry

Table of Contents

1 Introduction

This manual has been prepared for the purpose of providing the CFIA personnel and the operator of a registered establishment with a ready source of information relating to procedures and practices that should be followed in the course of the administration and enforcement of the Canada Agricultural Products Act and the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations.

This manual will be updated from time to time to ensure that it is current. Inspectors are encouraged to forward any ideas or new material that they consider appropriate to his respective Area Poultry Grading Specialist. In the interests of providing uniform national direction, the responsibility for the instructions in the manual rests with the Director of the Meat Program Division.

For any comments or questions on the Canadian Poultry Grading Program, please contact the Area Poultry Grading officer as per the following list:

Dr. Peter Scott Savage, E-mail: Peter.Scott-Savage@inspection.gc.ca
Mr. Lorne Peach, E-mail: Lorne.Peach@inspection.gc.ca

Centre opérationnel du Québec
Dr. Anne Lemay, E-mail: Anne.Lemay@inspection.gc.ca
Mr. Normand Olszensky, E-mail: Normand.Olszensky@inspection.gc.ca

Centre opérationnel de l'Ontario
Dr. Wendy Powell, E-mail: Wendy.Powell@inspection.gc.ca
Mr. Gerald Martyniuk, E-mail: Gerald Martyniuk@inspection.gc.ca

Centre opérationnel de l'Ouest
Dr. Gurpreet Deol, E-mail: Gurpreet.Deol@inspection.gc.ca
Mr. Tom Alexander, E-mail: Tom.Alexander@inspection.gc.ca

The parameters of operation established by the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations are based on good food manufacturing practices. These involve proper preparation practices and quality control.

1.1 Authority and Credentials

Each CFIA poultry grader should have in his or her possession as evidence of authority, a "Certificate of Designation" issued by the President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and which is prescribed in the Act and Regulations.

The authority for carrying out the provisions and requirements of the Regulations is provided for in the CAPS Act.

As specified in section 3 of Part I of the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations (LPCGR), no person other than a grader shall grade a poultry carcass for the purposes of the Act and these Regulations. As defined in the regulations, a "grader" means a grader designated by the President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

In order to meet the "Designation" requirements for the poultry graders, the following CFIA personnel must be designated:

  • The CFIA Area Poultry Grading Auditor;
  • The CFIA Poultry Grading Evaluator (international market);

For more explanation related to the CFIA designation process, please refer to the Area Poultry Grading Specialist. Section "Industry Personnel Designation Process" of this manual explains the designation process for the industry personnel.

The CFIA poultry grader's authority to enforce the Act and Regulations applies in all situations where graded processed poultry is marked with a Canada grade name.

If the authority of a CFIA poultry grader is challenged in the course of applying a provision of the Act or Regulations he should immediately refer the issue to the Area Poultry Grading Specialist.

2 Application for Poultry Grading Service

2.1 Eligibility

Section 2 of the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations limits grading to registered establishment as defined in subsection 2(1) of the Meat Inspection Act, or an establishment that is registered under an Act of the legislature of a province that provides for the inspection of livestock or poultry carcasses.

2.2 Application for Service

To obtain the poultry grading service, the operator must make a request in writing to the CFIA area office serving the establishment. On receiving the request, the area office will provide an application form, CFIA/ACIA 4625 – Application for Poultry Grading Service, to the operator concerned. The form must be duly completed and returned to the Area Poultry Grading Specialist. The information gathered will be used to determine the annual administrative costs billed to establishments. The fee payable for the poultry grading is described in Part 8 of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency Fees Notice, the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Fees of the CFIA Act. A new application form should be completed before the beginning of each fiscal year.

A non-continuous poultry grading service will also be offered to federal and provincial establishments wishing to grade on an irregular basis.

In completing the service application form, the operator undertakes to comply with the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations.

Companies wishing to receive the service in several establishments should complete a form for each of the said establishments.

2.3 Withdrawal of an application form

The operator may cancel an application request at any time by notifying the Area poultry grading specialist from CFIA in writing. The operator must ensure that all fees required have been paid.

2.4 Suspension of service

The grading service will be interrupted by the Director of the Meat Program Division in each of the following situations:

  • The establishment is no longer considered a registered establishment under the Canada Agricultural Products Act. The service will be interrupted and the suspension confirmed in writing as soon as possible.
  • The establishment has any outstanding fees to be paid. In such case, the notice of suspension will include a reasonable time frame to allow the operator to comply.

2.5 Application for Poultry Grading Service Form

The application form, Application for Poultry Grading Monitoring Service, (CFIA/ACIA 4625 Form) is available through the CFIA Forms Catalogue.

2.6 Operator's Poultry Grading Written Protocol

The operator that applied for the poultry grading services must have a written protocol. The written protocol will include the details of the poultry grading process, an update list of the designated employees, the training protocol and the monitoring procedures.

2.6.1 Operator's Poultry Grading Monitoring Procedures

The operator is responsible to ensure that poultry grading, for domestic market, is performed according to the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations, to adequately monitor the poultry grading process and to implement adequate corrective measures, if necessary.

The operator will monitor poultry grading for domestic market using an industry monitoring system developed by the industry. The monitoring tool will include the following:

  • Frequency of monitoring;
  • Random selection of samples;
  • Size of sample selected;
  • Standards (accept/reject);
  • Defect identification and scoring;
  • Calculation of test scores;
  • Recording on appropriate form;
  • Deviation procedures, when applicable.

Note: The Canadian Poultry and Egg Processors Council has developed a "Poultry Grading Monitoring tool" that is available to all poultry grading processors.

2.6.2 Industry Personnel "Designation" Process

In order to meet the "Designation" requirements for the poultry graders, the industry personnel are trained and accredited for designation, for all three (3) following positions:

  • The Industry Poultry Grading Trainer;
  • The Industry Poultry Grading Monitor;
  • The Industry Poultry Grading Grader.

For the purpose of poultry grading, the accreditation also means "designation". The operator must keep up-to-date each designated employee's training and accreditation records and material.

A minimum of one (1) previously accredited poultry grader shall be chosen by the operator to act as accredited poultry grading trainer. The CFIA Poultry Grading Specialist from the area, or his delegate, shall accredit the selected poultry grader as poultry grading trainer.

Once accredited, the establishment trainers shall function as trainers and accreditors for the industry poultry grading grader. The establishment trainers must perform the "Designation" process as prescribed in this section.

"Designation" recognition will be provided to all industry personnel that are trained and accredited as per this training process by the Meat Program Division Director.

The periodic review is required to determine whether the level of skill of the employee remains still satisfactory. The frequency of this review must be specified in the company's written training program and shall not exceed 12 months. This periodical review of the industry trainers is administered by a designated CFIA representative, using of the methods explained in titled section "Accreditation for Industry Trainers".

2.6.2.1 Accreditation for Industry Trainers

The accreditation of the industry trainers is carried out by CFIA in evaluating a number of carcass samples that include a variety of grading defects. These defects correspond to one of the grading category name that are allowed depending on the specie or class of graded poultry, such as Canada A, Canada Utility, Canada C and non-gradable. The tests include all defects that occur in the establishment for that specific class or specie. If the operator grades different class or specie of poultry, the test is performed on the main graded class or specie.

The trainee must select the corresponding grading category name for the entire sample to be evaluated with a passing mark of 80%. The accreditation process is performed by one of the two following options:

  • An evaluation comprised of a sample of thirty (30) fresh carcasses presented to the trainee, or
  • An evaluation comprised of a sample of thirty (30) pictures of fresh carcasses presented to the trainee by the use of an on-line test developed by CFIA under the "Canada School of Public Service",
    Note: A log in to MyAccount, available to all employees under the Public service, must be created and completed for each user.

The names of the trainees meeting the practical assessment passing mark and their results are submitted to the Poultry Grading National Officer in the central office for his review and "Designation". The operator receives the written "Designation" confirmation by the Area Poultry Grading Specialist.

The industry trainers in the accreditation process that failed the evaluation will review the poultry grading criteria before rescheduling another accreditation evaluation.

2.6.2.2 Accreditation for Industry Graders and Grading Monitors
2.6.2.2.1 Theoretical and Practical Training

The poultry grading industry personnel is supplied with copies of "Meat Hygiene Training Module B-10: Poultry Grading Standards" developed by CFIA. An electronic copy of this training module can be provided by the Area Poultry Grading Specialist for the area.

After studying the training module, the trainee continues the training in practicing the acquired knowledge. The minimum time required for the practical training is specified in the operator's training program.

Once the trainee demonstrates on-going competence with the necessary practical skills, the trainer can begin the practical evaluation.

2.6.2.2.2 Practical Evaluation

The accreditation of the industry grading personnel is carried out by the industry poultry grading trainer, previously accredited, in evaluating a number of carcass samples that include a variety of grading defects. These defects correspond to one of the grading category name that are allowed depending on the specie or class of graded poultry, such as Canada A, Canada Utility, Canada C and non-gradable.

The trainee must select the corresponding grading category name for the entire sample to be evaluated with a passing mark of 80%. The accreditation process is performed by an evaluation comprised of a sample of thirty (30) fresh carcasses presented to the trainee.

The names of the trainees meeting the practical assessment passing mark and their results are submitted to the Area Poultry Grading Specialist for his review and to finalise the "Designation" process. The operator receives the written "Designation" confirmation by the Area Poultry Grading Specialist.

The industry personnel in the accreditation process that failed the evaluation will review the poultry grading criteria before rescheduling another accreditation evaluation.

3 Poultry Grading Service

3.1 General

The poultry grading service is an optional service offered to registered establishments. It allows operators to market graded poultry identified in accordance with the grade names and requirements established by the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations.

Under the species Gallus domesticus, only poultry bearing the common names "chicken", "mature chicken", "capon", "Rock Cornish hen", and "old rooster" may be graded. The grading check will be done on fresh poultry when such product is available.

Under the species Meleagris gallopavo, turkeys must bear the common name "young turkey" or "mature turkey" to be graded. Ducks and geese must be identified as "young duck" or "mature duck" and "young goose" or "mature goose" respectively to be eligible for grading.

3.2 Responsibilities of the Operator

In order to facilitate grading, the operator is required to meet the minimum requirements specified by the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations. Therefore, the operator shall:

  • provide adequate facilities to hold and to examine sampled carcasses;
  • supply accredited poultry grading trainers and accredited industry grader for designation;
  • train and accredit the industry grader as per the operator's training program and maintain training records;
  • perform poultry grading monitoring as established by the operator's monitoring program;
  • determine and take the appropriate action in response to the poultry grading monitoring results; and
  • provide weekly poultry grading data on a format and at a frequency predetermined by CFIA (Poultry Grading Report, CFIA/ACIA 1099 Form)

In the process of conducting inspection/audit activities on agricultural product, the Act provides the inspector with the right to request assistance from plant management in performing his/her duties. Assistance should be provided to the inspector particularly where an inspection has been requested for certification or where product is being inspected/audited from storage stocks.

The personnel and plant management of registered poultry stations are obliged to cooperate in correcting grading and packaging as requested or instructed by an inspector.

3.3 Poultry Grading Process Requirements

The requirements pertaining to poultry grading process are listed below.

3.3.1 Evisceration

As defined in the section 2 of the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations, evisceration means to remove from a slaughtered poultry the blood, the feathers, the respiratory, digestive, reproductive and urinary systems, the head, the legs at the hock joints and the oil sac. Eviscerated poultry must comply with the evisceration conditions established for the registered establishment, as defined in the Meat Inspection Regulations or in the legislature of a province that provides for the inspection of poultry carcasses.

3.3.2 Chilling

Following the evisceration of poultry, the internal meat temperature should be reduced and maintained at a temperature of 4°C or lower as quickly as possible prior to grading and packing as fresh poultry. Poultry may also be frozen.

3.3.3 Grading

The grading and grade names applied to eviscerated poultry shall comply with the provisions established under Part VII, Grade Names and Grade Standards for Poultry Carcasses, of the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations.

For further details on poultry grading refer to the section on grade standards and specifications.

3.3.4 Packaging

Individual packaging of poultry shall comply with Section 62 of the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations.

3.3.5 Markings

The marking of poultry is prescribed by sections 63 to 67. For more information on the individual marking requirements for bags, tags, inserts, tickets and containers, refer to the "Packaging and Marking" section of this Manual.

3.3.6 Post-Freezing

The post-freeze condition, as covered by the grade standards, refers to the frozen poultry packaged appearance as it relates to the factors of surface desiccation, discoloration and freezer burn.

4 Grade Standards

4.1 Grade Factors and Specifications

"Part I – Administration" of the LPCGR sets out the "Terms and Conditions of Grading". The factors and specifications for the application of grades names are defined in Section 3 of the LPCG Regulations. This section states that an eviscerated poultry may be graded only if:

  • the carcass is from poultry slaughtered in an approved establishment;
  • the carcass has been inspected under the Meat Inspection Act or under an Act of the legislature of a province that provides for the inspection of processed poultry;
  • the flesh or skin of a chilled carcass is not dried out;
  • the carcass is not discoloured from insufficient draining of blood;
  • the carcass has no more than one heart, liver, gizzard and neck packed with it or inserted into it;
  • the breast bone is intact, in the case of a chicken carcass weighing more than 900 g;
  • the carcass has not been basted or stuffed; and
  • the carcass meets the standards for a grade name set out in Part VII of the LPCG Regulations.

In addition to meet the previous conditions, a partially eviscerated poultry carcass cannot be graded unless the following is met:

  • the epidermis is removed from the feet and shanks;
  • the toenails are removed;
  • the head, if present, is flushed (it is recognized that wrapping the heads is less efficient); and
  • the mouth, if present, is clean

The LPCG Regulations refer to the following three (3) grade names:

  • Canada A grade
  • Canada Utility grade
  • Canada C grade

The application of a grade name under the LPCG Regulations depends on established criteria considering the four (4) following factors:

  • Conformation
  • Flesh
  • Fat
  • Dressing

The specific conditions applicable for the grade names are defined in Part VII - Grade Names and Grade Standards for Poultry Carcasses".

4.2 Tables on Grade Factors and Specifications

Conformation – Canadian Poultry Grade Standards
Factors And Sub-factors Canada A Canada Utility Canada C
Skeletal Structure Normal
Slightly crooked keel
No meat interference
Slightly crooked keel
May have meat interference
Abnormal
Crooked keel
May have meat interference
Curvature of Back Moderate Allowed Allowed
Knobby Keels Slight to moderate Allowed Allowed
Cysts Nil

Weights < 2kg:
10 cent piece

Weights of 2 - 4.5kg:
25 cent piece

Weights > 4.5kg:
one (1) dollar coin

Allowed;
No maximum, clear contents
Deformed Backs Nil Nil Allowed
Blisters Max. length 2.5 cm Max. length 2.5 cm Allowed
Flesh – Canadian Poultry Grade Standards
Factors and Sub-factors Canada A Canada Utility Canada C
Flesh

Breast:
Moderately plump; moderate taper.

Keel:
Maximum projection anterior end 3.0 mm

Breast:
Sufficient to prevent sharp falling away from keel.

Keel:
Maximum projection 3.0 mm beyond the flesh.

Breast:
Sufficient to prevent extreme sharp falling.

Keel:
Maximum projection 5.0 mm beyond the flesh.

Fat – Canadian Poultry Grade Standards
Factors And Sub-factors Canada A Canada Utility Canada C
Fat

Chicken, Capon, Rock Cornish Hen, mature chicken, old rooster, Duck, Geese:
Breast, thighs and back show evidence of fat cover.

Turkey:
Deposits of fat in the main feather tract on breast, evidence by pronounced thickening at center

Sufficient to prevent flesh from appearing prominently through the skin. None
Dressing – Canadian Poultry Grade Standards
Factors And Sub-factors Canada A Canada Utility Canada C
Skin Tears

Breast (< 5.5kg):
Aggregate length of 6 mm

Elsewhere (< 5.5kg):
Aggregate length of 2.5 cm

Breast (≥ 5.5 kg):
Aggregate length of 1.2 cm

Elsewhere(≥ 5.5 kg):
Aggregate length of 3.5 cm

Areas of skin removed not more than 1/2 of the area of the breast.

Tears and cuts half the length of keel.

Allowed.
Discoloration

Breast:
Total area 1.6 cm²

Elsewhere:
Total area 6.5 cm²

Breast
Total area 6.5 cm²

Elsewhere
Total area 8.0 cm²

Not exceeding 14.5 cm²
Parts Missing

Wing Tips and Tail – may be removed.

Breast bone – may be removed for poultry weighting less than 900g.

Wing tips and flat wings – may be removed for Ducks and Geese.

Flesh Exposure:
Maximum 3.0 cm of exposed flesh at posterior end of the keel.

Wings – May be removed

Legs – One leg including thigh or both drumsticks removed

Tail – May be removed

Flesh – Small area of flesh

Skin – Not more than 1/2 of the area of the breast may be removed

Back Portion
Young and mature turkey < 7 kg = 4 cm maximum; and
Young and mature turkey ≥ 7 kg = 6 cm maximum

Note: parts must be removed at the joint

Same as Canada A
Freezer Burn Surface desiccation maximum area of 14.5 cm² Same as Canada A Allowed
Dried Out Areas Not allowed Not allowed Not allowed
Broken Bones and Dislocated Bones Minor dislocation of the vertebra column not affecting the shape and the rigidity is allowed Wing and leg bones may be dislocated - no broken bones Allowed

4.2.1 Additional Factor Clarifications

In addition to the criteria specified in the previous table, the following characteristics are to be considered.

Discoloration from slow freezing:

The light amber coloration of the skin attributed to slow freezing or thawing and refreezing, amber to brownish coloration of the skin, will be permitted in all grades. However, where the skin coloration is near mahogany color, the poultry will be classified as ineligible for a grade for reasons of excessive discoloration and poor freezing.

Discoloration resulting from the presence of frozen seepage:

When the accumulated water from the chill tank is of a dark red or amber color, the defect is identified as a dressing defect and is assessed according to the allowable amount of discoloration tolerated for the grade. However, in frozen poultry, when the color of the accumulated free liquid is pink or light amber in color, the condition is classified as poor drainage and the total area of the condition is not to exceed one and one half times the maximum allowable amount of discoloration. Frozen poultry exhibiting amounts of free water in excess of this amount is identified as a defect attributed to poor drainage and the poultry is declared ineligible for a grade.

Trimming:

In addition to the normally permitted trim under the grade standards, a small proportion of the backbone forward from the base of the tail will be allowed to be trimmed on Canada Utility grades of young and mature turkey for reasons of interior abdominal contamination.

Broken Backs or Rib Cages:

For those kinds of poultry where no Canada C grade is eligible, poultry possessing broken bones is ineligible for a grade.

Hock and Leg Parts Removal:

Although the Regulation has established that the legs of eviscerated poultry are to be removed at the hock joint, we will apply the following administrative tolerance for part separation. The maximum tolerance zone is below the condyle of the bone, where the medullary cavity (marrow) of the bone shaft starts. Cuts anywhere within the tolerance zone will result in an acceptable part separation provided the flesh is not mutilated and the meat yield associated with the part is not materially affected. The tendons connecting the flesh to the tibiotarsus must remain attached. The following image shows the acceptable zones to separate the legs:

Hock and Leg Parts Removal
Image shows the acceptable zones to separate the legs, as described above in "Hock and Leg Parts Removal".
Pinfeathers:

Means a miniature feather so protruding through the skin that it can be extracted and includes down. No pinfeather longer than 1.2 centimetres will be accepted for all species except turkey. A maximum pinfeather length of 1.8 centimetres will be permitted for turkey. Any follicle longer than the above tolerances will be considered as a feather and will not be deemed acceptable.

Discoloration, Desiccation and Freezer Burn Sizes:

The following pictorial illustrations indicate the size of the aggregate area allowed for the various grades of poultry on such factors as discoloration, surface desiccation and freezer burn.

  • 1.6 cm² is equivalent to an area of 1.3 × 1.3 cm.
    Aggregate area that measures 1.3 by 1.3 centimetres
  • 6.5 cm² is equivalent to an area of 2.6 × 2.6 cm.
    Aggregate area that measures 2.6 by 2.6 centimetres
  • 8.0 cm² is equivalent to an area of 2.8 cm × 2.8 cm.
    Aggregate area that measures 2.8 by 2.8 centimetres
  • 14.5 cm² is equivalent to an area of 3.8 × 3.8 cm.
    Aggregate area that measures 3.8 by 3.8 centimetres

4.2.2 Packaging – Ballooning

To establish a uniform national interpretation and application of packaging requirements for frozen graded processed poultry, the following table illustrates what is to be considered:

Packaging and Ballooning Dimension Table
Poultry Weight Aggregate Area of Ballooning Approximate Dimensions
1.0 kg and less 25 cm² 5cm × 5cm
1.0 kg - 2.0 kg 40 cm² 6.4cm × 6.4cm
2.0 kg - 5.5 kg 60 cm² 7.7cm × 7.7cm
5.5 kg and plus 100 cm² 10cm × 10cm

Since ballooning will occur under cold storage conditions following the packing of vacuum packed poultry, the ballooning or non-adherence of the wrapper to the carcass surface is to be assessed on the degree of this condition over the entire carcass.

Aggregate areas
Aggregate areas show the size difference between Approximate Dimensions, as described in Packaging and Ballooning Dimension Table.

4.3 Grading Mature Chicken

Carcasses under the designation "Mature Chicken" may be graded Canada Utility if the carcass meets the established standards for the Canada Utility, if both sides of the carcass breast have sufficient fullness of flesh and if the carcass is less than 1.8 kg in weight.

Grade C is exclusively reserved for mature chickens.

Note: Mature chicken may not be graded Canada C if the carcass meets the standards for the grade Canada A or the grade Canada Utility

5 Packaging and Marking

5.1 Packing and Packaging

Section 61 and 62 of the LPCG Regulations establishes the principal provisions for the packing of graded poultry.

Where corrugated fiberboard containers are used to pack fresh or frozen graded poultry, whether wrapped or unwrapped, they must meet the specifications contained in the Canadian Government Specifications Board Standard 43 GP 40 for Boxes, Corrugated Fiberboard for Graded Poultry.

The poultry container standard includes specifications for materials, styles, ventilation, closure and compression performance and represents the minimum manufacturing specifications for packing graded, dressed and eviscerated poultry which is fresh, frozen or deep chilled. The poultry container standard has been established to ensure that corrugated containers used to pack graded poultry are of sufficient strength and durability to adequately protect and maintain product wholesomeness during handling, transportation and storage.

If the container is constructed of corrugated fiberboard, the container, as required under section 2 and 62(1) (b), must be new, unused, clean and free from discolouration and objectionable odours.

The washable reusable container for packing poultry should be of a type which facilitates washing and sanitizing readily and must satisfy the general provisions of the regulations for strength and durability. A chemical evaluation and approval of the materials used in the containers' manufacture must be received from Food and Drug before a poultry processor is permitted to use the container. For poultry establishments coming under the Meat Inspection Act and Regulations, this chemical material composition approval is handled by CFIA Food Safety Division.

Containers in corrugated cartons with hand-holes must meet the following:

  • Open hand-holes or ventilating holes in corrugated cartons used in the transportation and/or storage of pre-packaged fresh or frozen poultry will be permitted provided that the inner packages remain visibly clean.
  • For non-pre-packaged fresh or frozen poultry, an overwrap or liner, which adequately encloses the contents, must be used in packing where hand-holes or ventilating slots are employed in the corrugated carton even if waxed on the interior.

5.1.1 Corrugated Container Program

  • Corrugated whole carcass poultry containers which additionally includes 15 dozen egg boxes, must show compliance with the respective Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) standards.

Where packaging found not to comply with the standards specification is involved in damaged eggs or poultry resulting from packaging failure, the existing container inventories of a manufacturer or user may be prohibited from further sale or use. The containers may be directed for other packaging purposes depending on the extent of the problem encountered.

5.1.2 Packing Individual Poultry

As required by Section 62 (2) of the LPCG Regulations poultry shall be individually wrapped or packed in containers which are either waxed or lined with other material which prevents the poultry from adhering to the container.

Section 62 (5) of the LPCG Regulations establishes that poultry must be sorted according to weight ranges to ensure uniform bird size throughout the pack and that only poultry having the same common name and grade shall be packed in a container.

For poultry that is individually wrapped, the wrapping material must be transparent in order that the general condition and factors establishing grade are visible to allow post packaging inspection of the poultry. The wrapping must be durable and non-susceptible to tears during handling, packaging and transport of the poultry.

Where shrinkable transparent material is used to individually wrap poultry, the wrap shall be of the proper size, form fitting to produce a neat, compact acceptable consumer pack minimizing bridging, ballooning, surface desiccation, freezer burn and the accumulation of free moisture on the carcass surface of the poultry.

5.2 Markings

5.2.1 General

Sections 63 to 67 of the LPCG Regulations contain details respecting the mandatory labelling requirements and the manner in which such information is to be applied to wrappers, tags, containers, tickets or labelling inserts for poultry.

Responsibility rests solely with the operator or manufacturer to design labels or label packaging material that complies with the mandatory labelling requirements prescribed by the various departmental regulations.

For federally registered establishments, the Meat Program Division requires the review and approval of the chemical composition of labelling and packaging materials which may come in direct contact with the poultry meat. The review and approval of the chemical composition of packaging materials is done in cooperation with the Food and Drug Division. For poultry processing stations or producer premises not operating under the Meat Inspection Act and Regulations, the manufacturers must deal directly with Food and Drug for the approval of the chemical composition of labelling or packaging materials prior to their use.

Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations apply only to pre-packaged products which refers to wrapped fresh or vacuum packed frozen poultry.

5.2.2 Packaging and Labelling Regulations requirements for pre-packaged poultry

The Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations applicable to pre-packaged poultry are as follows:

5.2.2.1 Declaration of Net Content

For pre-packaged poultry this would simply refer to the application of the weight and weight units (kg) to the poultry wrapper. Since poultry is classed as a catch weight product which means it cannot be uniformly weighed to pre-determined quantities, an exemption is granted under this legislation to the packer or processor for not applying the weight to each individual bird packaged.

5.2.2.2 Common Name of the Pre-packaged Product

Although the LPCG Regulations establishes the common names for graded poultry, the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations supersede their authority in terms of the general provisions for all pre-packaged products on the application and use of descriptive names by which it is commonly known.

5.2.2.3 Identity and Principal Place of Business

This simply refers to the name and address which identifies the party packing the poultry or the party for whom the poultry is packed.

5.2.2.4 Bilingual Labelling Requirements and Exemptions

All pre-packaged poultry must be bilingually labelled with the exception of those products qualifying as a locally produced poultry product. Locally produced poultry involves those poultry processors or producer graders who only market their poultry intra provincially within adjacent municipalities to the area in which the poultry is produced and packed. If poultry is locally produced and packed within an area that is designated bilingual, the labelling of the product must be bilingual.

5.2.2.5 Misleading Information

This refers to claims applied to the label or used in advertising which would tend to misrepresent the poultry to the consuming public. Examples of misleading information that would be considered unacceptable are as follows: the finest poultry, superior, premium brand, when expressed without a responsible company's or party's name, freshest, etc.

5.2.3 Food and Drug Regulations Requirements for Pre-Packaged Poultry

The Food and Drug Regulations establish three mandatory labelling provisions that are applicable to pre-packaged poultry.

5.2.3.1 Durable Life Date and Packaging Date Markings

The "packaging date" means the date on which a food is placed in an immediate package in which it will ultimately be sold to a consumer, except in the case of fresh or previously frozen meat, poultry or fish, or their by-products packed at other than the retail level in an immediate package in which it will be sold to a consumer, in which case packaging date means the date on which the packages are examined, weighed and priced by the retailer for the first time.

For fresh or previously frozen poultry the "packaging date" will replace the durable dating system on the package expressed in the same manner as the durable date but replacing the terms "Best Before" and "Meilleur Avant" with the terms "Packaged on" and "Empaqueté le". The durable date of the poultry meat will appear on a poster next to the poultry display.

The smaller retailer will be placing both the packaging date and the durable life date on the pre-packaged poultry due to the small volume of poultry handled and will not likely utilize the poster system of displaying the durable life date of the poultry. Example: Packaged on   Empaqueté le (81 AL 19).

5.2.3.2 Instructions for Storage

The instructions for storage must be shown on the pre-packaged poultry in both English and French anywhere except the bottom of the package. It may be labelled in unilingual English or French if it is a local product and marketed in an area which is not designated bilingual. Examples: Keep refrigerated / Garder Réfrigéré and Keep frozen / Garder congélé

5.2.3.3 Ingredient Listing

The ingredient listing is applicable to basted or graded stuffed poultry and refers to the food additives that have been added to the poultry which are applied to the labelled surface of the wrapper in order of their proportion or percentage on the label.

5.2.4 Wrappers and Bags

Since wrapped poultry qualifies as a pre-packaged product it must fulfill all the labelling requirements of the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations and Food and Drug Regulations as well as the LPCG Regulations.

Poultry grade marked and labelled with only a grade tag and packaged in a closed wrapper is not an acceptable manner of packaging poultry since it does not meet all the mandatory labelling provisions of the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations applicable to pre-packaged poultry.

The wrappers must bear pre-printed labels. Poultry wrappers and bags must be labelled with the descriptions, as explained below.

5.2.4.1 Grade Name of Poultry

The grade names Canada A, Canada Utility / Utilité and Canada C shall be shown within the outline of a Maple Leaf.

The grade name of the poultry identified by the Maple Leaf logo or the grade designation is required if the poultry is imported.

5.2.4.2 Common Name and Grade Name Position

The common name and the grade name must be positioned on the bag so that this marking appears in the centre of the breast of the carcass when the poultry is packaged.

5.2.4.3 Registration Number

The registration number may appear in the Meat Inspection legend or on the closure clip.

  • If the poultry is imported the words "Product of" followed by the name of the country and in the case of export the application of the words "Product of Canada".
  • All information must be shown in both official languages except that the name and address by or for whom the product was pre-packaged may be shown in one of the official languages with the exception of locally produced product.
5.2.4.4 Identity and Principal Place of Business

The identity and principal place of business of the person by or for whom the poultry was prepared for resale is required.

5.2.4.5 Prepared For

In the case of poultry prepared for some other person, the terms "Prepared for and Preparé pour" preceding the identity and principal place of business of that person. If the wrapper bears the other person's or company's name or brand name the words "Prepared By and Préparé Par" may be used to precede the company or establishment preparing the product if they choose to do so.

5.2.4.6 Breast Bone Removed

The words "breast bone removed" is required with the product name if the breast bone has been removed.

5.2.4.7 Basted

The word "basted", "pre basted", "deep basted" or "self-basted" immediately preceding the common name (or following the common name in the case of the French equivalent) and the words "graded before basting" on a line immediately above the line containing the word "basted" (or containing the words "common name" in the case of the French equivalent).

5.2.4.8 Container without Giblets

The words "no giblets / sans abattis" is required if there are no giblets in the container. Canada Utility / Utilité grade will be exempted from this statement since the statement "May have Parts Missing or May have Parts and Giblets Missing" satisfies this requirement.

5.2.4.9 Missing Parts

If the poultry is graded Canada Utility, the words "May Have Parts Missing / Des parties peuvent manquer" or "May have Parts and Giblets Missing / Des parties ou les abattis peuvent manquer".

5.2.4.10 Presence of Kidneys

The words "May Contain Kidneys / Peut contenir des reins" if the kidneys have not been removed from the carcass as specified in section 2 of the LPCG Regulations.

5.2.4.11 Net Weight Declaration
5.2.4.12 Weight Declaration Exemption

Since poultry is a catch weight product, sales to a retailer of pre-packaged poultry will not require application of the weight to the wrapper of each individual bird. Pre-packaged (catch weight) poultry sold by a retailer also does not require a dual net quantity declaration. The retailer has the option of applying either Canadian or metric weight to the poultry.

5.2.4.13 Storage Instructions

The Food and Drug Regulations require that storage instructions be applied, "Keep Refrigerated" and "Garder réfrigéré" or "Keep Frozen / Garder congelé", as the case may be.

5.2.4.14 Packaging Dates

The system of applied durable dates and packaging dates to fresh or previously frozen graded poultry will be the responsibility of the retailer as previously described.

5.2.4.15 Common Name of Ingredients and Ingredient Components

This would involve "basted turkey" where the ingredient and component listing of the basting solution must be identified. Where the ingredient listing is not in close association with the common name, Consumer and Corporate Affairs have stated that the poultry meat must be identified in the ingredient listing as well. The responsibility for its proper application is left with the Meat Program Division.

5.2.4.16 Descriptive Terms

Poultry which has never been frozen and up to this time has been traditionally known and described as fresh poultry may use the word "fresh" on a label as a descriptive term qualifying the poultry as to state only. Consumer and Corporate Affairs have established that the term "fresh" may not be used as a quality descriptive term for poultry as it has been determined as misleading. Other descriptive terms considered misleading such as best, freshest, premium brand when used without a company name, etc. are also prohibited.

5.2.4.17 Letter Heights

The common name and the letters for the Grades A, Utility and C following the word "Canada" in the grade name for pre-packaged poultry shall be shown in bold face type in letters of not less than the following height:

  • 3.0 mm where the net weight of the poultry is equal to or less than 1kg.
  • 6.0 mm where the net weight of the poultry is more than 1kg and equal to or less than 5kg.
  • 9.0 mm where the net weight of the poultry is more than 5kg.

For pre-packaged poultry with the grade name "Canada Utility / Canada Utilité", shall be in bold face type in letters of not less than the following heights for the grade name:

  • 3.0 mm where the net weight of the poultry is equal to or less than 5.0kg.
  • 5.0 mm where the net weight of the poultry is more than 5.0kg.
5.2.4.18 Maple Leaf and Letter Colors

The Maple Leaf on a wrapper for pre-packaged poultry shall be:

  • red, where the poultry is graded Canada A;
  • blue, where the poultry is graded Canada Utility;
  • brown, where the poultry is graded Canada C;

The grade name shall be with white letters.

5.2.4.19 Upper and Lower Case Letters

The "height" of a letter for markings referred to in the Regulations means the height of an upper case letter where the words appear in upper case and the height of the lower case letter "o" when words appear in lower case or in a mixture of upper and lower case.

5.2.5 Tags, Inserts and Tickets

Listed below are the labelling requirements:

5.2.5.1 Common Name of the Poultry
5.2.5.2 Grade Name of the Poultry

The grade name of the poultry is expressed by the Maple Leaf logo encompassing the grade letter or words and the word "Canada".

5.2.5.3 Identity and Principal Place of Business

The identity and principal place of business is associated to the person by or for whom the poultry was prepared for resale.

5.2.5.4 Prepared For

In the case of poultry prepared for another person, the terms "Prepared For and Préparé pour" must precede the identity and principal place of business of that person. If the tag bears the other person's or company's name or brand name, the words "Prepared By and Préparé par" may be used to precede the company or establishment preparing the product if they choose to do so.

5.2.5.5 Registration Number

The registration number except where the poultry is inspected under the Meat Inspection Act and the establishment number appears in the inspection legend. In the case of imported poultry, the establishment number may appear in the wholesomeness inspection legend or placed below the grade name. (Due to the limited labelling surface, the application of the registration number will suffice eliminating the necessity of applying "Reg. No." and "No. d'enreg.").

5.2.5.6 Presence of Kidneys

The words "May Contain Kidneys / Peut contenir des reins" if the kidneys may have not been removed from the carcass as permitted by the Meat Inspection Regulations or by a legislation governing the establishment.

5.2.5.7 Lettering Heights

The established lettering height for the labelling surface of a grade tag attached to poultry is 1.5 mm.

To maintain as equally a prominent grade name on the larger labelling surface of the insert, a 4.5 mm minimum labelling size has been requested.

In the case of a ticket attached to a container of poultry, the minimum lettering height for the grade letter Canada A or Canada C is 6.0 mm. For the grade "Canada Utility / Utilité", the minimum printing height would be 3.0 mm. The remaining mandatory markings shall not be less than 3.0 mm in height.

5.2.6 Containers

The shipping or bulk pack container shall be marked in the following manner:

5.2.6.1 Common Name of the Poultry
5.2.6.2 Grade Name of the Poultry

The poultry processor has the option of applying the grade name as simply "Canada" plus the grade letter or utilizing the Maple Leaf logo to express the Canada grade name. Where poultry containers are used to pack more than one grade of poultry, it is recommended that the grade name be applied without the grade logo to facilitate multiple grade application since there is a problem of obliteration with the Maple Leaf grade logo.

5.2.6.3 Identity and Principal Place of Business

The identity and principal place of business by or for whom the poultry was prepared for resale.

5.2.6.4 Prepared For

Where poultry is prepared for another person bearing his identity and address, the words "Prepared For" and/or "Préparé pour" where the container is bilingually labelled preceding the identity and principal place of business.

5.2.6.5 Registration Number

The registration or establishment number appearing in the Meat Inspection legend: Where the poultry processing establishment is not federally registered, the registration number may be applied at the bottom of the container.

5.2.6.6 For Further Processing

Where not individually marked poultry is graded Canada A, Canada Utility or Canada C and is intended for further processing, the words "For Further Processing" and "Pour transformation ultérieure" must follow the grade name.

5.2.6.7 Product of Canada

If the poultry is intended for export, the words "Product of Canada" and "Produit du Canada".

5.2.6.8 Net Weight of the Product

The net weight of the product expressed in metric.

5.2.6.9 Weight Symbols

The weight symbols are expressed as "kg" in lower case letters with no "s" or periods.

5.2.6.10 Container without Giblets

The words "No Giblets / Sans abattis" if there are no giblets packed with the poultry.

5.2.6.11 Number of Poultry

The number of poultry carcasses preceding the common name of the poultry if the package contains more than one poultry carcass.

5.2.6.12 Storage Instructions

The words "keep frozen" or "keep refrigerated" as the case may be.

5.2.6.13 Kill Date and Pack by Date

The poultry processors have also established with the Retail Council of Canada that they will apply "Kill Date" and "Pack by Date" on containers carrying pre-packed fresh poultry to facilitate dating of poultry meat at the retail store.

5.2.6.14 Lettering Height

The Regulations requires that the words "Product of" plus the country of origin be a minimum of one half the height of the common name of the poultry.

As a result of a move by industry to press for check off labels for frozen poultry containers, we have been forced to adopt a lower minimum print size for markings. The mandatory labelling of common name, grade letter or word, identity and principal place of business and the declaration of net contents shall be not less than 6.0 mm. For applying the grade name "Canada Utility / Utilité" in the Maple Leaf logo, 3.0 mm printing would be required.

6 Poultry Grading Evaluation

The following poultry grading evaluation plan is to be used for Area Audits. This plan is also for evaluating imported and exported products lots of graded poultry products, when required.

The purpose of the evaluation is to verify the compliance to the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations considering the grading name application, the packaging and the marking.

6.1 Sampling Plan

The sampling plan is exclusively to evaluate the grading name application. It consists of selecting randomly from the lot, a designated number of units of product required to make up the sample size.

The sample is inspected and the number of defective units recorded, upon which the entire lot is accepted or rejected according to the acceptance and rejection number criteria given in the plan.

Note: In some cases, such as the use of opaque bags, the grading evaluation may also include a Quality Assurance (QA) evaluation that is performed on line before packaging.

6.1.1 Definition and Acceptability of Sample Units

A sample unit comprises a group of 12 graded carcasses. Where carcasses are packed in containers holding a different number of carcasses than 12, the containers are converted into units of 12 carcasses each.

A sample unit is acceptable if not more than one (1) defective carcass is found from the twelve (12) carcasses selected and examined. The sample unit is unacceptable when two (2) or more defective carcasses are observed within the sample unit.

6.1.2 Sample Size and Acceptance Criteria

The number of units inspected shall be equal to the sample size given by the sampling plan. If the number of defective (nonconforming) units found in the sample is equal to or less than the acceptance number (Ac) for the appropriate sample size, the lot shall be considered acceptable upon removal of the defective carcasses found. If the number of defective (nonconforming) units is equal to or greater than the rejection number (Re), the lot shall be considered non-acceptable.

The following table explains the number of units to evaluate for a specific lot size and the according accept (Ac) and reject (Re) numbers.

Poultry Grading Evaluation Table – Sample Size and Acceptance Criteria
Sampling Plan for all Poultry except Fresh Turkeys
Lot Size
(number of units)
Sample Size
(number of units)
Ac Re
2 – 90 5 1 2
91 – 150 8 2 3
151 – 280 13 3 4
281 – 500 20 5 6
501 – 1,200 32 7 8
1,201 – 3,200 50 10 11
3,201 – 10,000 80 14 15
Plus 10,000 125 21 22
Sampling Plan for Fresh Turkeys
Lot Size
(number of units)
Sample Size
(number of units)
Ac Re
2 – 15 2 1 2
16 – 25 3 2 3
26 – 90 5 3 4
91 – 150 8 5 6
151 – 280 13 7 8
281 – 500 20 10 11
501 – 1,200 32 14 15
Plus 1,200 50 21 22

6.1.3 Rejection of a Lot

The lot is rejected when one of the following is observed during a poultry grading evaluation:

  • a sample evaluation result having the number of evaluated units meeting the rejection number;
  • a sample evaluation exceeding the maximum tolerance of 8.33% of defective carcasses for packaging errors (e.g. ballooning, torn wraps, etc.);
  • a lot having marking deficiencies (not in compliance with the LPCG Regulations)

In these cases, the entire lot will automatically indicate a failure and the lot will be held. Each held lot requires corrective measures in two (2) different levels. The first corrective measures are required to correct the deficiencies on the graded product and the second corrective measures are is required to correct the deficiencies on the grading process.

Corrective measures on graded product:

During a grading audit on domestic product or a grading evaluation for export purposes, the corrective measure on the rejected lot requires the entire lot to be remarked as non-graded product. Any references to graded product according to the LPCG Regulations are to be removed. Depending on the severity of the deficiencies, the rejected lot may be extended to a larger scale (e.g. daily product, weekly product...).

Corrective measures on grading process:

After discussions with the operator during the on-site audit, a copy of the Corrective Action Plan (CAP) is to be sent to the Area Poultry Grading Specialist. The corrections may also include the monitoring procedures of the operator.

For any rejected lot evaluation during a grading audit for domestic market, please refer to the "Corrective Action Request" explained in the Compliance Verification System (CVS), explained in Chapter 18 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of procedures.

For rejected evaluations of imported or exported poultry grading products, please refer to the Chapter 10 and 11 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of procedures.

6.1.4 Result Recording

The results of the audits or the evaluations will be recorded on the "Poultry Grading Verification Report", the CFIA/ACIA 4631 Form.

On the "Additional Remarks" section, in addition to commenting on the markings and packaging of the poultry, other points related to product preparation and grading which impacts on the quality of the graded poultry should be recorded.

7 Exports and Imports of Graded Poultry

7.1 Exports of Graded Processed Poultry

Section 13 of the LPCG Regulation allows graded and ungraded product to be exported. Graded products have to meet the standards established in the Regulation for the grade claimed and the requirements of the importing country.

An "Application for Inspection" (CFIA/ACIA 1018) and a Certificate of Inspection (CFIA/ACIA 1022) is required for lots that are graded and exported.

A joint agreement between Canada and United States allows poultry to be graded according to the grading standards of the importing country. The statement "The poultry covered by this certificate has been graded to meet the USDA grade specification" must appear at the bottom of the certificate for each shipment exported to United States.

For more information on exports of graded poultry to all countries, please refer to the Chapter 11 of the meat Hygiene Manual of Procedures.

7.2 Imports of Graded Processed Poultry

For imports requirements on graded processed poultry, please refer to Section 13 of Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations, and Chapter 10 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of Procedures,

7.2.1 U.S. Graded Poultry Eligibility

The only grading system that has grade standards comparable to Canada grade standards is the U.S. Consumer Grades for poultry which includes the following grades:

  • USDA Grade A
  • USDA Grade B
  • USDA Grade C

Graded poultry bearing the grade designation Grade Utility or Grade C (Canner) may be imported from the U.S.A. if it is graded equivalent to the Canada Utility and Canada C grade requirements.

In addition to the marking requirements specified by the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations for imported poultry containers, each container shall be marked by one of the USDA inspection stamps to assure that the graded poultry was graded according to the laws of that country.

7.3 Inspection Stamps

7.3.1 Sample Stamp

These stamps are used to identify selected samples, which are part of the inspection, of all poultry products. It is to be applied to the left centre area of the main marking panel or other open area on the container.

Sample Stamp

The Sample Stamp includes a Maple Leaf logo with an "S" letter representing the word "Sample" and includes the number "0137186" as an example of the Export Certificate number, associated with the lot.

7.3.2 Maple Leaf Stamp

This stamp is to be applied on all outer containers, including selected samples, of eggs, egg product and poultry certified for export subsequent to passing inspection.

Maple Leaf Stamp

The Maple Leaf Stamp includes the number "0137186" as an example of the Export Certificate number, associated with the lot.

7.3.3 Octagonal Stamp

This stamp is used on all containers of imported poultry products, including selected samples that have on inspection been found to meet the import requirements.

Octagonal Stamp

The Octagonal Stamp includes the number "0365782" as an example of the Import Certificate number, associated with the lot.

The above stamps are to be applied neatly and legibly, and with the exception of the "Sample Stamp", to the top right hand corner of the outer container. Stamps are to be applied only by inspectors unless specific exemption has been given for plant personnel to apply the inspection stamps. Where plant personnel apply inspection stamps, it is to be done under the supervision of an inspector.

7.4 Code Numbers

The code number usually consists of seven (7) numbers as follow:

  • The first four (4) numbers represents the Establishment number where the inspection was performed; a "0" is added at the beginning of the Est. number to complete the series of 4 numbers (e.g. "0137" = Est. # 137);
  • The last three numbers represent the day of the year (e.g. January 1st = "001", January 31st = "031", July 5th = "186", etc....)

In the sample code number "0137186", the number "137" represents the establishment where the graded product was inspected. The number "186" represents the inspection was performed on July 5th.

On the Certificate of Inspection form, the code number is inserted in the upper right hand corner by the inspector upon issuance of these certificates.

The Certificate of Inspection form is signed by the inspector who performed the grading inspection.

These code numbers will be used both on the sample stamp and maple leaf stamp for the export load and on the octagonal stamp for the import product.

7.4.1 Day of Year Chart

This chart is to be used to determine the consecutive day of the year. For leap year, see the Leap Year Chart further below.

Day of Non-Leap Year Chart
Day of Month Day in Jan Day in Feb Day in Mar Day in Apr Day in May Day in June Day in July Day in Aug Day in Sept Day in Oct Day in Nov Day in Dec
1st 1 32 60 91 121 152 182 213 244 274 305 335
2nd 2 33 61 92 122 153 183 214 245 275 306 336
3rd 3 34 62 93 123 154 184 215 246 276 307 337
4th 4 35 63 94 124 155 185 216 247 277 308 338
5th 5 36 64 95 125 156 186 217 248 278 309 339
6th 6 37 65 96 126 157 187 218 249 279 310 340
7th 7 38 66 97 127 158 188 219 250 280 311 341
8th 8 39 67 98 128 159 189 220 251 281 312 342
9th 9 40 68 99 129 160 190 221 252 282 313 343
10th 10 41 69 100 130 161 191 222 253 283 314 344
11th 11 42 70 101 131 162 192 223 254 284 315 345
12th 12 43 71 102 132 163 193 224 255 285 316 346
13th 13 44 72 103 133 164 194 225 256 286 317 347
14th 14 45 73 104 134 165 195 226 257 287 318 348
15th 15 46 74 105 135 166 196 227 258 288 319 349
16th 16 47 75 106 136 167 197 228 259 289 320 350
17th 17 48 76 107 137 168 198 229 260 290 321 351
18th 18 49 77 108 138 169 199 230 261 291 322 352
19th 19 50 78 109 139 170 200 231 262 292 323 353
20th 20 51 79 110 140 171 201 232 263 293 324 354
21st 21 52 80 111 141 172 202 233 264 294 325 355
22nd 22 53 81 112 142 173 203 234 265 295 326 356
23rd 23 54 82 113 143 174 204 235 266 296 327 357
24th 24 55 83 114 144 175 205 236 267 297 328 358
25th 25 56 84 115 145 176 206 237 268 298 329 359
26th 26 57 85 116 146 177 207 238 269 299 330 360
27th 27 58 86 117 147 178 208 239 270 300 331 361
28th 28 59 87 118 148 179 209 240 271 301 332 362
29th 29 88 119 149 180 210 241 272 302 333 363
30th 30 89 120 150 181 211 242 273 303 334 364
31st 31 90 151 212 243 304 365

This chart is to be used to determine the consecutive day of the year for the leap year.

Day of Leap Year Chart
Day of Month Day in Jan Day in Feb Day in Mar Day in Apr Day in May Day in June Day in July Day in Aug Day in Sept Day in Oct Day in Nov Day in Dec
1st 1 32 61 92 122 153 183 214 245 275 306 336
2nd 2 33 62 93 123 154 184 215 246 276 307 337
3rd 3 34 63 94 124 155 185 216 247 277 308 338
4th 4 35 64 95 125 156 186 217 248 278 309 339
5th 5 36 65 96 126 157 187 218 249 279 310 340
6th 6 37 66 97 127 158 188 219 250 280 311 341
7th 7 38 67 98 128 159 189 220 251 281 312 342
8th 8 39 68 99 129 160 190 221 252 282 313 343
9th 9 40 69 100 130 161 191 222 253 283 314 344
10th 10 41 70 101 131 162 192 223 254 284 315 345
11th 11 42 71 102 132 163 193 224 255 285 316 346
12th 12 43 72 103 133 164 194 225 256 286 317 347
13th 13 44 73 104 134 165 195 226 257 287 318 348
14th 14 45 74 105 135 166 196 227 258 288 319 349
15th 15 46 75 106 136 167 197 228 259 289 320 350
16th 16 47 76 107 137 168 198 229 260 290 321 351
17th 17 48 77 108 138 169 199 230 261 291 322 352
18th 18 49 78 109 139 170 200 231 262 292 323 353
19th 19 50 79 110 140 171 201 232 263 293 324 354
20th 20 51 80 111 141 172 202 233 264 294 325 355
21st 21 52 81 112 142 173 203 234 265 295 326 356
22nd 22 53 82 113 143 174 204 235 266 296 327 357
23rd 23 54 83 114 144 175 205 236 267 297 328 358
24th 24 55 84 115 145 176 206 237 268 298 329 359
25th 25 56 85 116 146 177 207 238 269 299 330 360
26th 26 57 86 117 147 178 208 239 270 300 331 361
27th 27 58 87 118 148 179 209 240 271 301 332 362
28th 28 59 88 119 149 180 210 241 272 302 333 363
29th 29 60 89 120 150 181 211 242 273 303 334 364
30th 30 90 121 151 182 212 243 274 304 335 365
31st 31 91 152 213 243 305 366

8 Poultry Grading Audit Program

The audit of the poultry grading program's delivery will be conducted at the area by the Area Poultry Grading Specialists, or his delegate, to ensure compliance to the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations, as part of the Compliance Verification System by CFIA (please refer to the Chapter 18 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of Procedures).

National audits will be conducted by the national Poultry Grading Officer, or his delegate, at specific frequencies to ensure national consistency.

8.1 Area Audit Protocol for Federally Registered Establishments

To assess the quality of program delivery as well as the progress in reducing the degree of grade and packaging deviations in Canada grades of chicken, turkey and other poultry, poultry grading program audits will be conducted on all federal establishments under the Canadian Poultry Carcass Grading Program. In evaluating the grading outcome, the audit will also ensure an adequate grading monitoring by the operator.

Although the main thrust of the audit program is to evaluate the application of the Canada A grade standards to chicken and turkey this does not exclude auditors from verifying the interpretation and accuracy of application of the other Canada grade names to chicken, turkey or other kinds of graded poultry.

8.1.1 Number of Area Audits

The minimum number of audits at the area level conducted on federal meat inspected establishments will be related to the establishments' graded volume as illustrated in the following table. The graded volume of each establishment is determined on a weekly basis covering all the Canada grades of chicken, turkey, ducks, geese and other poultry categorized as to large, medium and small as indicated. The number of audits may be increased, based on the Area Poultry Grading Specialist observations and judgements, to ensure adequate grading process control.

Grading Audits per Year and per Establishments
Volume Rating
(Number of graded carcasses per week)
Number of Area Audits
S (less than 30,000 graded carcasses/week) 1
M (30,000 to 75,000 graded carcasses/week) 1
L (75,000 and more graded carcasses/week) 2

8.1.2 Area Audits Procedure

The area poultry program audits will be conducted by the Area Poultry Grading Specialist, or designate at the frequency established. Additional audit may be conducted depending on the operator's compliance.

The area audit team will consist of the following persons:

  • Area Poultry Grading Specialist (or designate);
  • Regional Veterinary Officer (if available);
  • Veterinarian in Charge;
  • Senior inspector of the establishment being audited (if applicable).

Following the evaluation of the graded poultry product, the Area Poultry Grading Specialist or his designate will prepare the audit report in conjunction with other members of the audit team. After completing the audit report and before leaving the establishment, the audit findings will be reviewed with the Veterinarian in Charge and the operator. For federally registered establishments, the audit results are replicated on the CVS Verification Worksheet and Report.

The results of the audit evaluation are to be distributed as follows:

  • Area poultry grading specialist;
  • Veterinarian in Charge of establishment audited;
  • Operator of the establishment been audited.

For details on the Area Audits procedures, please refer to "Poultry Grading Evaluation" section, Section 6 of this Manual.

8.2 Area Audit Protocol for Provincially Registered Establishments

Provincially registered poultry stations will be audited at the area level. Each grading station is to be audited a minimum of once per year. The audit results on the establishment's level of sanitation are categorized in accordance with the non compliance levels as follows:

Audit Compliance Levels in Provincial Establishments
Category
AAA Excellent
AA Good
A Fair
B Critical
C Intensive Inspection
F Fail

Stations rating "A", B, "C" or "F" for sanitation require the preparation of corrective action plans with subsequent follow up visits, from the respective provincial inspection agency, to re evaluate station sanitation as well as preparing a report on the progress in initiating corrective action on deviations identified on the original audit. The follow-up report will be copied to the Area poultry Grading Specialist.

For details on the Area Audits procedures, please refer to "Poultry Grading Evaluation" section, Section 6 of this Manual with the understanding that any reference to the CVS is not applicable.

8.3 National Audits

National audits will be conducted by the National Poultry Grading Officer, or his delegate, accompanied by the Area Poultry Grading Specialist or his designate on one (1) grading establishment per year in each area. For the province of Ontario the audit team will also include a representative from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, Meat Inspection Program, and for the province of Alberta a representative from Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency. The national audit will assess the uniformity of the poultry grading delivery.

The selection of the national audited establishment will be determined by the number and degree of non compliances, grade violations, consumer complaints and degree of response by operators in initiating corrective procedures as identified in audit reports and corrective action requests. To avoid additional area audit, the national audit will be performed during the area audit of the selected establishment.

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