MT Farm Bureau Pleased with USDA ID Rules


The following is a press release from the Montana Farm Bureau Federation: 


The Montana Farm Bureau Federation is pleased the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s final rule accepts hot brands as official identification for interstate movement of livestock. The rule establishes general regulations for improving the traceability of U.S. livestock. USDA received more than 1,600 comments on the proposal.  


In response to recommendations from Farm Bureau and cattle groups, USDA modified the final rule to recognize brands as official identification when agreed upon by both the shipping and receiving states; maintain back tags as an alternative identification to ear tags for animals moving direct to harvesting; and exempt beef cattle under 18 months of age, with the intent to phase in these animals through a separate rulemaking once the system has proven effective for breeding cattle. 


“Montana has excellent brand laws in place, so it’s rewarding to see those will be accepted for traceability in livestock,” notes MFBF President Bob Hanson. “Under the final rule, unless specifically exempted, livestock moved interstate can now be officially identified and accompanied by an interstate certificate of veterinary inspection or other documentation, such as owner-shipper statements or brand certificates. This adds no extra work or expense for Montana ranchers, as we already have this traditional, effective tool in place even when we ship animals across county lines.” 


Other acceptable low-cost technology that is approved as official identification for each species includes metal ear tags or “Brite” tags for cattle.  Producers utilizing livestock for custom slaughter or home consumption are exempted, as well as chicks moved directly from a hatchery.  


“We appreciate Montana ranchers providing comments on the acceptance of brands as official identification,” Hanson said. “It’s good to see that suggestions received from this part of the country were taken into consideration and used in the USDA’s final rule.”




Source:  MFBF

Posted by Haylie Shipp



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