Selling uninspected meat remains illegal in Alberta. All meat resulting from slaughter under an On-Farm Slaughter Operation (OFSO) licence is uninspected and cannot be sold, traded, gifted or bartered. A carcass cannot be shared with another customer nor can an OFSO licence holder sell portions of a carcass.
For more information:
The On-Farm Slaughter Operation Licence (OFSO) enables an individual to conduct on-farm slaughter and processing activities on their property.
This licence will enable a livestock producer to sell a live animal to a customer and the customer can have the animal slaughtered and processed on the farm. The producer or any other individual can slaughter an animal if it is done humanely and safely.
The licensed operator can slaughter and process meat as a part of an uninspected slaughter operation as per section 11(1)(d) of the Meat Inspection Regulation.
This licence also enables an individual to provide a location for others to conduct on-farm slaughter and processing activities such as for 4H slaughters and for religious celebrations.
The On-Farm slaughter operation is to be conducted outside on the licensed plot of land. The slaughter process is not permitted to be conducted in a building.
The meat from the animal is uninspected, not for sale or for further distribution. The meat is only for the consumption of the customer and the customer’s immediate household only. This limits the risk of a foodborne illness outbreak since the meat is for a single household and is not further sold, bartered, gifted or distributed.
For additional information, review the on-farm slaughter operation technical guide.
- Licence holders are responsible for reviewing and following applicable legislation and other licensing requirements as identified on the application form.
- Licence holders are responsible for adequately labelling product with :
- Uninspected – not for sale
- The name of the slaughter operation
- The slaughter date (including day, month and year)
- Licence holders are responsible for providing potable water.
- Licence holders may choose to slaughter under their licence, or may authorize any person to slaughter under their licence. The licence holder shall ensure that the animal(s) are slaughtered humanely and safely. Every carcass must be kept in a safe and sanitary manner and at a temperature that ensures that meat will be free of spoilage and contamination.
- Zoning restrictions limit slaughter in some areas such as a county and/or a municipality. The licence holder is responsible for ensuring compliance with bylaws in their county or municipality.
- Applicants that also hold an AF facility license (mobile butcher or abattoir) for the same plot of land as the On farm Slaughter operation are required to show that the on-farm license slaughter premise and activities are separated from the meat facility premise and activities.
- Licence holders are required to submit quarterly reports within 2 weeks of the end of each quarter.
You can apply for an Alberta On-Farm Slaughter Operation Licence if you:
- Can lawfully operate a business in Alberta
- Are at least 18 years of age
5-year licence fee: $100
Licences are valid 5 years from the date of issue.
How to apply online
To apply for and purchase an On-Farm Slaughter Operation licence online, you will need:
- A valid credit card (Visa, Mastercard or American Express) or Interac debit card
- An email address (to receive updates and information about Alberta regulations)
1. Review licensing requirements and responsibilities outlined in the application
2. Complete application and submit payment
3. After your application has been reviewed and processed, your licence will be sent to you by email or mail.
Processing your application may take 2 to 4 weeks.
How to apply by mail
- Review licensing requirements and responsibilities outlined in the application
- Download the PDF fillable application form to your computer or print the application, then fill in the requested information.
- On-Farm Slaughter Operation licence application (PDF, 2.5 MB)
Note: In order for your application to be processed, the form must be complete.
PDF form issues
Fillable PDF forms do not open properly on some mobile devices and web browsers. To fill in and save the form:
- Save the PDF form to your computer – click or right-click the link and download the form.
- Open the PDF form with Adobe Reader. Fill it in and save it.
Cheques or money orders should be payable to the Government of Alberta and mailed with your application form to the address below:
Meat and Dairy Inspection Section
Agriculture and Forestry
Suite 108, J.G. O’Donoghue Building
7000 113 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T6H 5T6
Do not send cash.
After you apply
After your application has been reviewed and processed, your licence will be sent to you by email or post.
Processing your application may take 2 to 4 weeks.
On-Farm Slaughter Operation Licence holders must submit a report within 2 weeks of the end of each of these quarters:
- Quarter 1: January to March
- Quarter 2: April to June
- Quarter 3: July to September
- Quarter 4: October to December
Note: Quarterly reporting enables Agriculture and Forestry to monitor designated slaughter limits per producer or customer consumption. Adhering to slaughter limits is the responsibility of the licence holder.
Animal slaughter limits per customer per calendar year:
- Six (6) large red meat animals (for example: beef, bison, elk, yak, ostrich) and
- Twelve (12) hogs and
- Twelve (12) sheep and
- Twelve (12) goat and
- 150 poultry or other small animals (for example: quail, rabbit)
Download and fill out: On Farm Slaughter Operation Reporting Form (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Send your completed PDF report form by clicking on the “Submit by Email” button at the bottom of the form.
If you are not sending your report forms by email, mail your printed reports to the mailing address that appears above on this page.
If you are interested in submitting your on-farm slaughter operation reports online, watch the following tutorial: Opinio On-farm slaughter operation data entry.
If you would like to use this tool to submit your on-farm slaughter operation report, click here to request access to the OFSO report form. MDIS will send you the link and password for the report and instructions to complete it.
Online reporting must be done while connected to the internet.
If you have questions about the On-Farm Slaughter Operation Licence, contact: [email protected]
Should you have any questions about on-line reporting, please contact:
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