SASKATOON, Saskatchewan — The Canadian Food Inspection Agency will be creating 16 Centres of Expertise across Canada.

The centers will consolidate expertise for specific programs. The initiative is the result of the federal government's effort to create an efficient system for providing guidance and expert advice to industry and CFIA inspectors.

"These Centres of Expertise will pool expertise and make it available through a single window, making the CFIA more efficient and giving industry, CFIA inspectors and Canadians better, more consistent service," said Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz. "In addition, locations will be near both academic and provincial experts in a particular field to leverage expertise and collaboration among organizations."

The centers will be located across Canada. CFIA considered several factors when selecting the sites, including:

• current concentration of related industries
• proximity to industry organizations
• proximity to provincial experts in that field
• proximity to academic experts in that field
• current concentration of staff involved in the related activity

Calgary, Alberta, will host a center for red meat slaughter, while St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, will be the home of poultry slaughter, processed meat and poultry and domestic animal disease and welfare.