Livestock producers represented by the Billings, MT cattlemen’s group known as R-CALF say they have a  “right” to use “traditional low-cost methods related to animal identification and traceability.” 

But USDA’s Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) with growing support from such industry leaders as Tyson Foods wants to soon require “radio frequency identification (RFID) ear tags for tracking animals in the United States.

The new technology — replacing everything back to the branding iron—is needed in the world where quick tracking during outbreaks of animal disease is critical to limiting the economic harm that’s possible.

R-CALF, represented by the New
Continue Reading Federal court in Wyoming asked to block RFID technology

USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), has backed off its July 5, 2020, Federal Register Notice that would have required the use of radio frequency identification (RFID) ear tags on all adult cattle and bison moved in interstate commerce by Jan. 1, 2023.

This means that the original notice will not be finalized and that all current APHIS-approved methods of cattle identification may be used as official identification until further notice.

In formal comments submitted in October,  Billings, MT-based cattlemen argued that APHIS’s mandatory RFID notice was unlawful and the only way the agency could change current law
Continue Reading USDA starts formal rulemaking process for RFID ear tags

Where is the nation’s cattle herd is a question that could have traceability ramifications for food safety, or maybe more commonly for tracking dreaded animal diseases.

The USDA’s Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has picked at the issue for some time. In 2013, its final rule on “Traceability of Livestock Moving Interstate” came up with “official identification and documentation necessary for the interstate movement of certain types of livestock.”

The 2013 final rule did not require the use of any new technology, which was opposed then and opposed now by many cattle and bison producers. They want to
Continue Reading R-CALF would like to keep USDA from thinking about RFID traceability tags

For the cause of traceability, radio frequency identification (RFID) ear tags will be required in American beef cattle, dairy cows, and bison by Jan. 1, 2023.

Unless, of course, a Montana-based cattle ranchers’ organization can persuade a federal judge in Wyoming to call a halt to the RFID mandate handed down by USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Traceability is increasingly in the food safety spotlight because of its crucial role in contamination and outbreak investigations.

The Billings, MT-based Ranchers Cattlemen Action Legal Fund United Stockgrowers of America on Oct. 4 sued USDA on the issue in U.S.
Continue Reading Ranchers ask federal court to block RFID traceability tags for cattle, bison