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National animal ID traceability regulation news
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced Dec. 20 a final rule establishing general regulations for improving the traceability of U.S. livestock moving interstate.
Under the final rule, unless specifically exempted, livestock moved interstate would have to be officially identified and accompanied by an interstate certificate of veterinary inspection or other documentation, such as owner-shipper statements or brand certificates.
After considering the public comments received, the final rule has several differences from the proposed rule issued in August 2011. These include:
•Accepting the use of brands, tattoos, and brand registration as official identification when accepted by the shipping and receiving states or tribes
•Permanently maintaining the use of backtags as an alternative to official eartags for cattle and bison moved directly to slaughter
•Accepting movement documentation other than an Interstate Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (ICVI) for all ages and classes of cattle when accepted by the shipping and receiving states or tribes
•Clarifying that all livestock moved interstate to a custom slaughter facility are exempt from the regulations
•Exempting chicks moved interstate from a hatchery from the official identification requirements.
Beef cattle under 18 months of age, unless they are moved interstate for shows, exhibitions, rodeos, or recreational events, are exempt from the official identification requirement in this rule. These specific traceability requirements for this group will be addressed in separate rulemaking, allowing the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service to work closely with industry to ensure the effective implementation of the identification requirements.
For more specific details about the regulation and how it will affect producers, visit www.aphis.usda.gov/traceability.
Animal disease traceability, or knowing where diseased and at-risk animals are, where they’ve been, and when, is very important to ensure a rapid response when animal-disease events take place. An efficient and accurate animal disease traceability system helps reduce the number of animals involved in an investigation, reduces the time needed to respond, and decreases the cost to producers and the government.
This notice is expected to be published in the Dec. 28 Federal Register.
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