Friday, June 05, 2009

USDA to offer more NAIS listening sessions

From the National Cattlemen's Beef Association:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has released details for six additional public listening sessions on the implementation of the National Animal Identification System (NAIS). For information, visit: www.usda.gov/nais/feedback.shtml.
All beef producers, regardless of size, location or type of operation, will be affected by this program. In order to ensure NAIS works for the beef industry and accomplishes the goal of improved animal disease response and surveillance, without harmful unintended consequences, it is vital that individual producers and operations share their concerns and ideas for improvement with USDA. NCBA encourages all interested parties to attend the listening sessions or submit comments. Individuals may pre-register for the sessions at: NAISSessions@aphis.usda.gov or submit comments at: www.regulations.gov.

NCBA has talked to Secretary Vilsack about this issue and we're encouraged by his efforts to maintain an open and constructive dialogue with stakeholders. We look forward to continuing to work closely with USDA on the development of an animal identification system that makes sense for producers. NCBA advocates a voluntary animal identification system that is workable, affordable and able to move at the speed of commerce to enable state and federal animal health officials to respond rapidly and effectively to animal health emergencies, such as foreign animal disease outbreaks or emerging domestic diseases. We continue to stress that animal ID is not a food safety tool. There are already multiple firewalls and inspection procedures in place to keep our beef supply safe. The NAIS will not enhance food safety, nor was it intended for that purpose.

NCBA has led a number of producer education and outreach efforts to encourage participation in animal identification systems, and many of our members already participate voluntarily in a variety of these programs as one of many tools to improve their herds, monitor disease, and better market their cattle. The private sector plays a tremendous role in the administration of these voluntary programs, and NCBA believes that private sector involvement and the resulting competitive market forces benefit producers while maintaining the objectives of the NAIS.




1 comment:

GrannySue_in_IL said...

It would be nice if organizations like the NCBA would remind their members that the legal definition of a stakeholder is:

"...a disinterested third party holding property for its rightful owner." Black's Law Dictionary, Cornell Law Dictionary.

If your members are mere stakeholders, then who owns their land and their cattle??

Sue

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