MANHATTAN, Kan. – In an effort to provide educational tools for explaining Animal Disease Traceability in the beef industry and to highlight the basics of the CattleTrace program, we developed a video which is now available for anyone to view and share. Go to the About Us page on www.CattleTrace.org to share it, and check it out above or below.
The Tag Tracker
In order to build a dataset to test during the two-year pilot, three key production scenarios were identified to allocate the 55,000 tags in a purposeful way, enhancing the likelihood of sighting animals at multiple points of commingling.
- Whole Path – Tag calves at the cow/calf segment before the first point of commingling. Ideally, all cattle would be tagged at the ranch of origin, but we know only a percentage will end up at partner livestock markets. That is why we are focusing recruitment at the cow-calf level with producers who may already do business with a partner livestock market. This ensures reads at the livestock market, feedyard and packer.
- Direct Buy – Working with our partner feedyards, we are identifying cow/calf producers and/or backgrounders to tag cattle before they arrive at the feedyard. This ensures reads at the feedyard and the packer segments.
- Livestock Markets – Tag calves after they go through the sale ring at a livestock market, knowing they were purchased by a partner feedyard. This ensures reads at the market, feedyard and packer segments.
CattleTrace would not be where we are today without strong partners at all levels of the beef industry – from cow-calf producers, livestock markets, backgrounders, feedyards and processors, to allied industry organizations, technology companies and public sector partners, including state departments of agriculture and USDA. In addition to highlighting progress on the pilot project, we also want to recognize partners who have taken an active role in CattleTrace. For this “Partner Perspective,” we asked Tom Jones, managing partner of Hy-Plains Feedyard, LLC, and current vice chair of the CattleTrace, Inc. Board of Directors, the following question.
Why did Hy-Plains decide to get involved with CattleTrace, and, in your opinion, why is animal disease traceability important?
Hy-Plains Feedyard is involved in the CattleTrace program to evaluate and improve the ability to track individual animals back to the source origin. The CattleTrace program is being performed with minimally required infrastructure and labor, while still allowing state animal health officials access to the information needed to track foreign animal diseases when necessary. Efficiently identifying where the animals originated and were commingled with other animals along the production chain will result in the implementation of more rapid and effective control methods if the need would arise.