Farmed elk not responsible for spread of disease

As an elk farmer here in Alberta, I am writing to dispel misleading information about our industry, specifically inferences that farmed elk are responsible for the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Canada.

As an elk farmer here in Alberta, I am writing to dispel misleading information about our industry, specifically inferences that farmed elk are responsible for the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Canada.

It’s important that the public differentiate between wild elk and deer that roam the country, and animals that are raised on domestic production farms, also known as game farms.

Last year, the government promoted killing (or culling of herds) of wild deer near the Saskatchewan border in an attempt to reduce the spread of and exposure to CWD among wild deer and elk. That activity and ongoing hunter surveillance since 2005 has found only 61 cases of CWD out of over 25,500 tested. All of these cases were in wild deer populations, not in animals raised on farms or ranches.

Elk farmers in Alberta go to great lengths to keep their herds protected from disease.

In fact, domestic elk have been selectively bred for more than 25 years, and many Alberta elk ranchers have bred more than five generations of animals on their ranch without any incidence of CWD.

Since 2002, when one elk tested positive for CWD, more than 43,000 farmed elk have been tested by the government of Alberta through its mandatory CWD testing program, and all have proven to be CWD free. In addition, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) regularly inspects elk herds and tests for illnesses such as tuberculosis and brucellosis.

We take pride in the elk we raise and are committed to do the right thing for the future of Alberta.

Anyone who wants to better understand my family’s level of commitment is welcome to visit our elk ranch.

We hope that all Albertans will better understand how domestic elk are raised and share in our pride.

Frank Kuhnen, Sr.

Red Deer

Just Posted

Bringing music to Red Deer for 50 years

The Red Deer Community Band Society has been bringing music to the… Continue reading

Guards injured, money stolen, during overnight blast at Edmonton bank

EDMONTON — Two security guards have been injured in an explosion that… Continue reading

Pot stores on agenda at Toronto city council after two municipalities opt out

TORONTO — Councillors in Toronto are set to debate whether to allow… Continue reading

Police believe body found near Mexican resort is missing Quebec woman

MONTREAL — Mexican authorities have found the body of a woman near… Continue reading

WATCH: CP Holiday Train rolls into Lacombe

Kelly Prescott performed for hundreds of Central Albertans

Sex assault trial for former gymnastics coach resumes in Sarnia

SARNIA, Ont. — The trial of a former high-ranking gymnastics coach accused… Continue reading

Victims of former ski coach Charest say they were ‘sacrificed’ by Alpine Canada

MONTREAL — A lawsuit filed Wednesday against Alpine Canada by three victims… Continue reading

Emily Blunt on the ‘daunting’ task of playing Mary Poppins

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Emily Blunt loves a challenge, and in the… Continue reading

Tommy Chong says Canada’s weed legalization has kept ‘underground market alive’

TORONTO — Tommy Chong has a pass, man. While some Canadians who… Continue reading

Apple deepens Austin ties, expands operations east and west

AUSTIN, Texas — Apple will build a $1 billion campus in Austin,… Continue reading

Trump comments upend U.S. approach to Huawei, trade talks

WASHINGTON — The United States and China have taken pains this week… Continue reading

WATCH: CP Holiday Train rolls into Lacombe

Kelly Prescott performed for hundreds of Central Albertans

Dumba scores twice, Wild rout Canadiens 7-1

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Reeling and banged up, the Minnesota Wild were… Continue reading

Most Read