OTTAWA, ONTARIO – Effective July 1, all Canadian cattle must be tagged with an approved Radio Frequency Identification (R.F.I.D.) tag before moving from their current location or their farm of origin.

Cattle producers must not remove existing bar-coded tags; they must leave the bar-coded tag on the ear and apply a R.F.I.D. tag to the same animal. They must cross-reference the identification number on the R.F.I.D. tag with the number on the bar-coded tag in the Canadian Livestock Tracking System (C.L.T.S.). Cross-referencing the numbers will allow all of the information about the animal to be maintained. In Quebec, producers are still permitted to apply bar-coded tags jointly with R.F.I.D. tags to cattle.

Cattle that arrived on pastures with bar-coded tags before July 1, 2010, will not need to be immediately retagged. Until Dec. 31, 2010, they will be allowed to be transported to their home farm where an approved tag can be applied. However, if the animal is leaving the pasture and is not going to the farm from which it came, it must have a new approved tag affixed when leaving the pasture.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency enforces national identification and movement reporting requirements for cattle, bison and sheep under the authority of the Health of Animals Regulations.

For more information on Canada’s livestock identification systems, go to: For more information on traceability in Canada, go to: