NCBA says they’re watching implementation of EID rule closely

The USDA has finalized a rule requiring certain cattle to have electronic identification if they’re moving across state lines.

Ethan Lane with the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association says USDA wants information in case there’s a disease outbreak and he’s not surprised with any details included in the final rule.

“It’s taking the 2013 animal disease traceability rule, which established that class of cattle, in tact over 18 months moving along the interstate, as well as dairy cattle, rodeo cattle and bison, and requiring those animals to be traceable as they move across state lines.”

Starting November 1, he says cattle farmers and ranchers will be required to carry a visually and electronically readable tag.

“USDA has shifted their nomenclature from RFID to EID and in their rulemaking they explained they believe the technology is going to continue to evolve and they didn’t want to create a rule that would pigeonhole existing technology, but created some open space for the marketplace to find other solutions.”

Lane says there are options as cattle farmers and ranchers prepare.

“Producers can still get tagged up under the old system using metal tags if they want or they can go to their state animal health official and get electronic tags.”

Lane also says NCBA will be closely watching the implementation, including state compliance with the new rule and how the beef supply chain responds.

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