Beef Buzz News
USDA Undersecretary Greg Ibach Continues Push For Animal Identification Program And Additonal USDA Regulatory Powers To Help Cattle Industry
Wed, 05 Aug 2020 11:44:58 CDT
The USDA continues to push for an effective animal identification program for breeding age animals over 18 months of age and during the recent NCBA Summer Conference in Denver, Colo., Greg Ibach, USDA Undersecretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, talked with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays about the issue.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes With Greg Ibach
The program was delayed last year after the industry requested additional time to make the program more reliable and efficient.
The livestock marketing association and the sale barns said it was difficult to read the traditional metal tags, Ibach said.
They were interested in working with us to have an electronic method making the tags more readable, he said.
Following President Trump’s executive order requiring public comment and transparency on USDA regulations, the USDA stepped back and reorganized their efforts.
It gave us an opportunity in the middle of this to listen to the industry and develop a new and improved version of an electronic identification, Ibach said.
The USDA official said there is no effort to have an animal identification program for animals under 18 months of age.
Our focus at USDA is on breeding animals that move into interstate commerce, he said.
We are not interested in breeding animals that move directly into slaughter because they are inspected at that time for disease, he said.
Moving towards an effective animal identification program is just part of the overall effort to expand USDA’s regulatory power.
Following the recent release of the USDA’s price spread investigation after the plant fire in Kansas and the COVID-19 outbreak impact, Ibach said there are some steps they can take in improving the situation.
There are some things we can do to address those concerns as well as work with Congress about additional powers they could give to USDA, he said.
Ibach said during both events there were times when market transparency and ability to provide price discovery were hampered because of the amount of negotiated trade in the market.
He added the environment is ripe for Congress to reauthorize mandatory price reporting.
This is an opportunity for Congress to make some adjustments to our authority to help address some of those concerns.
Specifically, Ibach said they want to provide price transparency in every region every week.
Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear more of Ron’s interview with Greg Ibach.
The Beef buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today’s show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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