Dr. Martine Dubuc is Canada's new chief food safety officer, and Dr. Ian Alexander has been appointed as the new chief veterinary officer.
Dr. Brian Evans, who previously filled both roles, is taking on new responsibilities at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) as special advisor to the president.
"Canada has a strong food safety system founded on sound science and aligned with international standards," Minister Ritz said. "The chief food safety officer plays a key role in ensuring our food safety activities benefit from the latest science and continue to contribute to the health of Canadians and to Canada's overall economic performance. Dubuc will be a tremendous asset in her new role."
Dubuc has been with the CFIA since November 2008 and previously worked at senior levels in the Quebec government with responsibility for animal health and the food safety system. She will continue her work as the CFIA's vice president of Science.
As chief veterinary officer, Alexander will provide national leadership to ensure that Canada's animal and veterinary public health infrastructure is positioned to effectively manage current and emerging disease threats in order to protect animal and human health, and to maintain international trust in Canada's inspection and certification systems in support of market access.
"I am pleased to welcome Dr. Alexander to this important role," said Minister Ritz. "I am confident he will build upon the good work already being done to ensure Canada's animal health system remains among the best in the world."
Alexander joined the CFIA in 2010 from Health Canada, where he served as the director of the Clinical Evaluation Division and acting director general of the Veterinary Drugs Directorate. He will continue his current duties as executive director of the Animal Health Directorate at the agency while serving as chief veterinary officer.
Minister Ritz and CFIA president George Da Pont also recognized Evans' 14 years of service as Canada's chief veterinary officer and two years as Canada's first-ever chief food safety officer.
"I'd like to thank Dr. Evans for his contributions as Canada's chief veterinary officer and chief food safety officer, as well as for his international service," said Ritz. "He has been a strong leader for Canadian food and animal safety and is a highly respected professional here in Canada and around the world."
"Dr. Evans has played an important part in shaping Canada's animal health policies over the years, first at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and at the CFIA," said Da Pont. "More recently he has provided leadership on food safety at the agency. He will continue to share his knowledge, expertise, and international perspective in his new role. I look forward to working even more closely with him as my special advisor."
Evans will continue in his role as the government of Canada's delegate to the World Organization for Health (OIE) and in his tenure on the OIE Council representing the 30 member countries of the OIE region for the Americas.