Identification System Forced on Producers

US - The South Dakota Stockgrowers Association is disappointed to learn of memos recently sent from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to veterinarians across the country, calling for registration of livestock owners in the National Animal Identification System.
calendar icon 8 December 2008
clock icon 1 minute read

According to AgWeek, SDSGA Vice President Kenny Fox, of Belvidere, says veterinarians are being told to sign up cattle owners who take part in standard animal health procedures necessitating a vet such as brucellosis vaccinations, diagnostics testing and many others. Agweek reported that Fox claimed the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is effectively mandating NAIS registration and the stockgrower group is urging USDA to rescind its memo immediately.

“Time and again, USDA has promised that the NAIS is a voluntary program, and time and again they try to force involvement in their program,” Fox told AgWeek. “They know that independent agriculture doesn’t support a mandatory system, so they keep telling us ‘don’t worry it’s just voluntary,’ while they go behind our backs and use every conceivable method of coercing producers to sign up. They talk the talk but they don’t walk the walk.”

Fox says the stockgrowers hope USDA will realize the mistake it has made in issuing the Sept. 22 memo, and thinks it should contact every recipient, telling them not to sign up a single producer unless that producer requests it.

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