National Animal ID System - please act

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by CoopmasterK, Dec 8, 2011.

  1. CoopmasterK

    CoopmasterK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2009
    Rehoboth Beach, DE.
    I'm not sure if this is the proper topic for my post but I wanted to get this out for people to see. The USDA is considering implementing a scaled down, back door version of the National Animal ID System which will require a federal ID ( with an associated fee ) for every livestock animal, even backyard poultry. Below is a link to learn more and take action. The USDA is only accepting comments until close of business tomorrow, Dec. 9. Thanks in advance for your help.

    http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/sign/stop_new_animal_ID/?akid=422.92037.vxzNEe&rd=1&t=6
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Northwest Arkansas
    These are excerpts from the write-up of the act. I try to not translate legalese but instead try to read the stuff that is written in English.



    Poultry would have to be identified either by means of a GIN, or
    with sealed and numbered leg bands. These identification methods are
    consistent with those required for poultry flocks participating in the
    National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) regulations (9
    CFR parts 145 through 147), and thus would not represent a change for
    most poultry producers.




    Poultry moving interstate would have to be accompanied by an ICVI,
    with some exceptions similar to those allowed for cattle and bison when
    other safeguards are in place. Specifically, the proposed exceptions to
    the ICVI requirements for poultry are as follows:
    The poultry are from a flock participating in the NPIP and
    are accompanied by the documentation required under the NPIP
    regulations for participation in that program;
    The poultry are moved directly to a recognized
    slaughtering establishment;
    The poultry are moved from the farm of origin for
    veterinary medical examination, treatment, or diagnostic purposes and
    either returned to the farm of origin without change in ownership or
    euthanized and disposed of at the veterinary facility;
    The poultry are moved directly from one State through
    another State and back to the original State;
    The poultry are moved between the shipping and receiving
    States or Tribes with a VS Form 9-3 or documentation other than an
    ICVI, as agreed upon by animal health officials in the shipping and
    receiving States or Tribes; or
    The poultry are moved under permit in accordance with 9
    CFR part 82.



    Could you tell me what specifically is in this proposed Act that would affect our Backyard flocks? I can’t find anything that concerns me. I don’t see anything different than current requirements as far as getting chicks from a hatchery and I am not in a major commercial operation raising them and shipping them interstate for meat. Federal regulations don’t control movements within states and these have room for special agreements between states.

    This has come up before on this forum. It is primarily for beef, not poultry. No one has yet been able to show any specific thing in here that affects Backyard Chickens. We are covered under the exemptions. I don't know exactly how this affects small beef owners growing beef for theor own use or small operations. From what I can tell, it does not affect smaller beef operations either, but that is not my concern. Backyard chickens are.
     
  3. CoopmasterK

    CoopmasterK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2009
    Rehoboth Beach, DE.
    Actually I got this notice from my cousin whose flock pastures in Maryland and their coop is in Delaware, they cross back and forth over the state line all day. My personal concerns are that I keep a closed flock and have had no history of disease. I sell chicks produced from my flock at various venues and I do not participate in the NPIP. Frequently I sell at venues that have patrons from other states. My understanding is that if this rule were enacted I would no longer be able to sell to folks intending to transport the chicks across state lines without the trouble and expense of registering and banding each animal and providing accompanying paperwork. I also suspect that such a rule would likely cause an increase in chick prices from the hatcheries which would impact folks who don't have roosters as they must buy pullets to increase or replenish their flock. Thirdly, this rule is intended to benefit large agribusiness and their export markets. I understand the large operation's concerns about disease spread as the county I live in produces more broilers than any other county in the U.S. However, I am not in favor of USDA rules which benefit industrial agriculture and can/may cause expense and inconvenience to those who have opted out of the industrial agriculture system. Lastly, at the risk of sounding paranoid, I wouldn't be surprised if this is just an incremental step in regulatory changes which adversely impact small scale farmers and livestock owners. The industrial agriculture lobby is powerful and well funded and the industry is not happy about losing market share to small scale farmers and backyard producers. Thanks for responding.
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    Then I suggest you contact to your US Representative or US Senator and address your specific concerns with them. You'll probably get a form letter back, but maybe you'll get someone to actually look at your situation if you are specific. I do think you raise your chances of getting a decent response by referencing specific parts of the legislation you are concerned about and explaining why you are concerned rather than sending that form letter type thing in the link you referenced. If I were a politician (which I am not) I'd ignore those form letters. But a specific reference to a specific part of a proposed bill would get a lot more attention, especially if you explain why it might affect you specifically.

    A lot of times these bills get originally written by specialists from the big businesses that are affected and they don't take into consideration how it affects the little guy. I don't think they do it deliberately to preserve market share. I think our cut is so small that they are not really concerned about us from that aspect, but I do think they are conecerned about our operations being infected which can cause panics in the buying public affecting their bottom line, or affect the export market. Russia, for example, is looking for any excuse to shut off our chicken exports to help their domestic market. That's why we have to use these review periods and come up with constructive comments so we can get them amended. S510 is a decent example of this. As originally written it could hurt those of us with gardens that sell at farmer's markets. But after some comments it was amended to exempt the small guys. The end product did not hurt us.

    Anothe possible approach is to contact your county extension agent and question how this act will affect your specific operation. Not all county extension agents are the same, but this is something they should be able to help you with. Mine would not know himself, but I think Johnny would put me in contact with someone that does know.

    I'm no legal expert at all. From previous discussions about this act on this forum and what I remember about those discussions (which may not be real accurate. I get confused pretty easily and there are a few of these), I don't think this act would affect either you or your cousin. From what I read, I think your cousin's specific situation is addressed and I think you'd be exempt as long as it is just a few chickens, especially if they are not going directly to slaughter in a decent sized commercial slaughter operation. You'd be silly to rely on me for this, since I'm just a voice out on the internet. You really need to check it out yourself.
     
  5. CoopmasterK

    CoopmasterK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2009
    Rehoboth Beach, DE.
    Hey Ridgerunner, I appreciate your input. I've already contacted my 2 senators and my representative in congress and have received polite responses that there isn't much they can do, which I knew before I wrote them. This issue isn't a congressional legislative issue but a USDA rule change which falls under the Obama administration. It's an election year and he's trying to give Big Ag something they couldn't get in the farm bill. You hit the nail on the head about Russia, my Senator and governor actually went there to get the ban on U.S. chicken imports lifted because those exports are a big part of Delaware's economy. China is trying similar tactics regarding imports of U.S. beef. That's another reason this rule change sticks in my craw - it's not about food safety but politics. Besides that, with poultry being such a big industry in Delaware and on Maryland's eastern shore, those 2 states have some of the strictest laws and rules in the nation regarding poultry sanitation, processing and the spread of avian disease. Consequently I don't see the need for the feds to impose additional regulations. I think most states with big livestock industries are the same.

    I'm originally from DC and used to be involved in politics but got sick of it and moved to Delaware 20 years ago for a simpler life. Regarding those web forms, you're right, they don't get as much attention as personal contact. But politicians and department heads count the favorable and unfavorable emails like they used to count phone calls for or against an issue. I'll be following this issue closely and will post a follow up once the USDA announces a decision. Thanks again for your input.
     

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