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From: TSS (
Subject: National Animal Identification System; Public Meeting [Docket No. 04-119-1]
Date: November 9, 2004 at 7:57 am PST

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: National Animal Identification System; Public Meeting [Docket No. 04-119-1]
Date: Tue, 9 Nov 2004 10:02:58 -0600
From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr."
Reply-To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

[Federal Register: November 8, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 215)]
[Page 64714]
>From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []



Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

[Docket No. 04-119-1]

National Animal Identification System; Public Meeting

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of public meeting.


SUMMARY: We are advising the public that the Veterinary Services
program of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, U.S.
Department of Agriculture, will host a meeting to provide stakeholders
in the Department's National Animal Identification System (NAIS),
particularly manufacturers and distributors of animal identification
devices and technologies, with an opportunity to offer comments on the
administration of animal identification numbers under the NAIS.
Specifically, the session will focus on the anticipated roles and
requirements for individuals, organizations, and companies that wish to
become authorized animal identification number managers or distributors
of approved animal identification devices.

DATES: The public meeting will be held Friday, November 19, 2004, from
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

ADDRESSES: The public meeting will be held at the Kansas City Airport
Marriott, 775 Brasilia Avenue, Kansas City, MO.

Identification Officer, National Center for Animal Health Programs, VS,
APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 43, Riverdale, MD 20737-1231, (301) 734-

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On December 30, 2003, the Secretary of
Agriculture announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
would expedite the implementation of a National Animal Identification
System (NAIS) for all animal species after the discovery of bovine
spongiform encephalopathy in a cow in Washington State. On April 27,
2004, following several months of development, the Secretary announced
the framework for implementation of a NAIS designed to provide a unique
identification number for agricultural premises and animals so that
diseases can be more quickly contained and eradicated. The Secretary
also announced that $18.8 million would be transferred from the
Department's Commodity Credit Corporation to provide initial funding
for the program during fiscal year (FY) 2004. The FY 2004 funding has
been earmarked for the initial infrastructure development and
implementation of the national system, but both private and public
support will be required to make it fully operational. The
Administration's proposed FY 2005 budget includes another $33 million
for the effort.
The NAIS will be implemented in several phases over time.
Currently, the registration of premises, i.e., the locations where
livestock are raised or held, is the primary activity of the NAIS. The
second phase will involve the identification of animals. Certain
species, such as cattle, will require individual identification, which
will be accomplished by attaching to the animal an approved
identification tag or device bearing an animal identification number
(AIN). The AIN may be cross-referenced or linked to other technologies
(e.g., radio frequency identification, retinal image, DNA, etc.) to
automate the collection of the animal's number or to verify the
animal's identification. Other species, such as swine and poultry,
typically move through the production chain in groups or lots. These
animals may be eligible for identification as a group.
In order to facilitate the implementation of the NAIS, we are
publishing an interim rule in the Rules and Regulations section of this
issue of the Federal Register (APHIS Docket No. 04-052-1, ``Livestock
Identification; Use of Alternative Numbering Systems'') that, among
other things, amended the regulations to recognize additional numbering
systems for the identification of animals in interstate commerce and
State/Federal/industry cooperative disease control and eradication
programs and to redefine the numbering system to identify premises
where animals are managed or held. The interim rule recognizes
numbering systems for individual animals, as well as groups or lots of
animals within the same production system. Use of the new numbering
systems will not, however, be required as a result of the interim rule.
Various non-producer participants will be involved in administering
the NAIS. One group of non-producer participants is the AIN managers,
who will manufacture or provide distributors with approved
identification devices or technologies containing the AIN. Another
group is the AIN distributors, who will provide AIN tags or devices to
premises that hold or manage livestock.
The design and development of an AIN management system will be
initiated in the near future. This system will require a method to
approve entities to become authorized AIN managers and distributors and
to evaluate performance. In addition, the system will need a method for
the allocation and distribution of AINs and the approval of official
animal identification devices.
For implementation to be successful, it is imperative that we share
our plans for the AIN management system with potential AIN managers and
distributors and provide a forum for them to present their views.
Therefore, we plan to conduct a public meeting on Friday, November 19,
2004, at the Kansas City Airport Marriott, Kansas City, MO, for
industry stakeholders, in particular those that manufacture and/or
distribute animal identification devices. The focus of the session will
be on the anticipated roles and responsibilities of AIN managers and
distributors under the NAIS.
The meeting will be open to the public and is intended to provide a
forum for the exchange of information regarding the administration of
AINs under the NAIS. The meeting is not intended to serve as an
opportunity for the submission of comments regarding the interim rule
published in this issue of the Federal Register (APHIS Docket No. 04-
052-1, ``Livestock Identification; Use of Alternative Numbering
Systems''). Persons wishing to submit comments on that interim rule
should refer to the commenting instructions contained in that document.

Done in Washington, DC, this 2nd day of November 2004.
Kevin Shea,
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. E4-3052 Filed 11-5-04; 8:45 am]


USDA Hopes to Verify Cattle's Ages Through Physical Traits

Omaha World-Herald, November 06, 2004


The U.S. Department of Agriculture is studying ways for cattle producers
to prove an animal's age through physical traits rather than through
source verification and traceable records.

Japan and Taiwan have agreed to accept U.S. beef from livestock younger
than 21 months. The countries stopped importing U.S. beef last December
after a case of mad cow disease was discovered in the United States.
Having a verifiable system is key for re- establishing trade.

The USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service met with producers and
meatpacking companies this week in Kansas City, Mo., to explain what to
expect from trade talks between the United States and Japan.

"If the Japanese importers don't approve our standards or protocols,
then it doesn't work," said Greg Ibach, assistant director of the
Nebraska Agriculture Department.

After last December's discovery of mad cow disease, USDA officials
announced that they would quickly implement a national animal
identification program. The agency has since backed off that proposal.

With USDA approval, Nebraska has started its own voluntary
identification plan that registers farms that own livestock. Ibach said
about 100 producers have registered for the program.

Nebraska officials are not immediately moving toward a mandatory
program, however.

"That's not something we're pushing for in Nebraska," Ibach said. "We
will follow what USDA signals if they come to a time when they want to
do something like that."

Rather than use certified identification records, the USDA is studying a
group of cattle that researchers have documented since birth and is
comparing physiology of the animals for key traits. The goal is to show
that there are ways to properly verify an animal's age without
definitive records.

"If USDA is successful in convincing the Japanese government of allowing
us to use some measure of physiological maturity, then that changes the
picture altogether," said Jeff Stolle, vice president of marketing for
the Nebraska Cattlemen.

Stolle, who attended this week's meeting, said many unknown factors
exist for producers and meatpackers regarding identification requirements.

"We're just beginning the phases of identifying what Japan will want for
certification and proof," Stolle said.

Meatpackers interested in exporting to Japan would have to provide USDA
with a quality management system that the agency would have to approve.
Part of the plan would require explaining how the packer would verify age.

Producers want to know what they have to do to keep cattle eligible for
export, but right now there are no firm answers, Stolle said.

"Those were the very same type of questions we were hoping to get some
type of clarification on but weren't surprised that we didn't, because a
lot of that still has yet to be worked out," Stolle said.

Last year, Japan imported $1.7 billion worth of U.S. beef, or about 10
percent of America's total production, according to the USDA.

Ibach said state officials intend to schedule a meeting with USDA
officials in Washington, D.C., sometime in the next month to find out
more about how to certify Nebraska livestock for export to Japan.

(C) 2004 Omaha World-Herald. via ProQuest Information and Learning
Company; All Rights Reserved

> Rather than use certified identification records, the USDA is studying
> a group of cattle that researchers have documented since birth and is
> comparing physiology of the animals for key traits. The goal is to
> show that there are ways to properly verify an animal's age without
> definitive records.

hypothetical ;-)

hey there tex..............


how old you recon that heifer there is?

well, by looken at

and them permanent centrals—which have been "in wear" the longest—shoes
the most erosion and project so far from the gums that their roots are
exposed. The roots, which lack the enamel that covers a tooth's crown,
are a dirty yellow color, so i recon about six

well tex, hate to tell ya, but that there's too old for export.

hmmm, second guess, how about 20 months...


Records contradict USDA's mad cow decision

No mad cow results for nearly 500 cows

By Steve Mitchell
United Press International
Published 8/11/2004 11:23 AM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- The U.S. Department of Agriculture failed
to test for mad cow disease or collect the correct portion of the brain
on nearly 500 suspect cows over the past two years -- including some in
categories considered most likely to be infected -- according to agency
records obtained by United Press International.

The testing problems mean it may never be known with certainty whether
these animals were infected with the deadly disease. Department
officials said these animals were not included in the agency's final
tally of mad cow tests, but the records, obtained by UPI under the
Freedom of Information Act, indicate at least some of them were counted...



Steve Mitchell is UPI's Medical Correspondent. E-mail
Copyright © 2001-2004 United Press International

Mad Cow: Linked to thousands of CJD cases? By Steve Mitchell
United Press International
Published 12/29/2003 9:50 AM


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