KITCHENER, ONTARIO – The government of Canada announced funding of up to C$559,285 to help Turkey Farmers of Ontario finalize and launch a new insurance product to protect Ontario turkey producers from losses associated with outbreaks of avian influenza.

The product is intended to bridge the gap in existing coverage by covering economic losses resulting from the difference between compensation through the Canadian Food Inspection Agency for animals ordered destroyed and their full market value. Economic losses may include incremental costs such as cleaning and disinfection of a premises, veterinary services, feed disposal and other costs related to the resumption of operations.

“The turkey industry has encountered numerous challenges over the past few years and this funding is very important for the implementation of an Avian Influenza Insurance Program,” said Brian Ricker, chair of Turkey Farmers of Ontario. “This will protect not only turkey producers but by extension the poultry industry in Ontario.”

Canada’s turkey industry generates products worth C$382.6 million, and up to C$42.6 million in exports to 37 countries. The insurance program will ensure that Ontario turkey producers are able to resume production as soon as possible following an outbreak of avian disease.

“Disease outbreaks can have a big impact on producers and our government is working hard to support them when they face these challenges,” said Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. “This new insurance product will help Ontario turkey farmers in their efforts to protect their businesses and return to production following a sudden outbreak of avian influenza.”