Maintaining standards on the farm

Verification is an important element of any quality assurance program. Here are the three main types of verification to which all dairy farms in Ontario are subject.

On-farm audits help ensure compliance

Validations or audits are performed on each farm once every two years to assess performance in a range of areas from animal care to standard operating procedures. 

Farmers declare their commitment

Self declarations are documents submitted by farmers between validations that indicate their ongoing compliance with proAction, a national quality assurance program.

Keeping the program on track

Dairy Farmers of Canada undergoes regular, third-party internal audits to help ensure the proAction registration system meets the standards of national agencies and organizations.

How it works in practice

Dairy farming in Ontario is regulated by federal government organizations, as well as policies and programs developed by the Canadian Dairy Commission in conjunction with provincial marketing boards and industry partners.

On the farm

The proAction program provides dairy farmers with guidelines and procedures governing milk quality, food safety, animal care, livestock traceability, biosecurity and the environment.

On-site testing

To help ensure quality and purity, milk is assessed by a Bulk Tank Milk Grader (BTMG) before it leaves the farm, and a tank of milk will be rejected if it shows signs of spoilage or contamination. 

Laboratory testing

The milk grader collects a sample of the raw milk in the bulk tank to send to the University of Guelph's Laboratory Services Division for testing to ensure it meets strict Canadian standards. 

Read more about how dairy farmers maintain quality standards

Environmental sustainability

Protecting the environment can help reduce waste and costs while keeping farmland viable for future generations.

Learn about sustainability

Farming technology

Advances in technology have helped make cows more comfortable, healthy and productive.


Animal care

Happy, healthy cows are more productive cows – and caring for them is an important responsibility.

Learn about animal care