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Archived - Evaluation of the Food Safety Action Plan

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The Canadian Food Inspection Agency's (CFIA) Evaluation Directorate is responsible for evaluating the relevance and performance of Agency programs, policies and initiatives. This effort supports informed decision-making and enhances performance and accountability.

The Evaluation Directorate is accountable to the CFIA's Evaluation Committee, chaired by the President. All evaluations must be reported to the Evaluation Committee and must be conducted in accordance with the Treasury Board's Policy on Evaluation. Evaluation projects are selected based on higher risk or significance during an annual Agency planning process, and then reflected in the Agency's Evaluation Plan, which is approved by the Evaluation Committee.


The Food Safety Action Plan (FSAP) was led by the CFIA and was a major component of a series of initiatives announced by the Government of Canada in December 2007 to modernize and strengthen Canada’s safety system for food, health and consumer products.

The evaluation of the Food Safety Action Plan covers the period from April 2008 to November 2012 and includes all of the activities for which the CFIA received funding to improve food safety, with the exception of information management and information technology.

Key Findings

The report notes that it is difficult to determine whether the plan had met expected outcomes. It proposes two recommendations that would inform future similar initiatives. For each of these recommendations, the CFIA has committed to the following actions:

  1. The report recommended that the CFIA develop and formally implement of a strategy to manage and measure agency performance on specified outcomes.
    • The CFIA has established a set of performance indicators for food safety activities under the Safe Food for Canadians Action Plan. These new food safety targets and performance measures have been implemented as of July 2013.
  2. The report recommended that the CFIA develop an approach to better communicate with stakeholders how the various food safety initiatives are related.
    • Through the Safe Food for Canadians Action Plan announced in May 2013, the CFIA informed stakeholders how the Agency was working to develop stronger and modernized approaches for keeping food safe. The action plan provides information for industry and other stakeholders on how these various food safety initiatives fit together.

Complete report:

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