Oct 14 2006

US Govt demands ID of all farm animals

The National Animal Identification System is a system by the US Department of Agriculture in which every farm is “registered” with the federal government and that every animal on every farm is tagged by some method, and has its movements tracked for life in a federal database. “These methods could include radio frequency identification tags, retinal scans, DNA, or others.” NoNAIS.org is a good source of information opposing the plan.

Just like TSA’s tracking program for humans, Registered Traveler, and the State Department’s chipping program for humans, RFID Passports, NAIS is “voluntary” now but planned to become mandatory. Various states, such as Texas, have already passed laws requiring farms to register for it. USDA is honest enough to admit its plan:

  • NAIS is currently a voluntary program. To ensure the participation requirements of NAIS not only provide the results necessary to maintain the health of the national herd but also is a program that is practical for producers and all others involved in production, USDA has adopted a phased-in approach to implementation. Although the draft strategic plan references mandatory requirements in 2008 and beyond, to date no actions have been initiated by USDA to develop regulations to require participation in NAIS.

No mandatory regulations have been “initiated”, but lots of other actions have been. Many small farmers have been threatened by state agriculture agents with big fines or the slaughter of their animals if they refuse to play along. And you can be sure that all the lessons learned about how to tag and track every animal will be re-applied to tagging and tracking every human.