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Rep DeLauro zeroes out NAIS budget n a letter recently sent to Rosa DeLauro, Chairwoman of the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Agriculture, R-CALF USA expressed its appreciation for her decision to withhold further funding for the National Animal Identification System (NAIS) until Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack completes his nationwide NAIS listening sessions. The letter explained that the NAIS program is not an effective vehicle to achieve animal health and livestock market benefits. “The NAIS proposal was developed by the industrialized processing sector of our meat supply chain and it tramples over the rights and privileges of U.S. family farmers and ranchers,” the letter states. Instead of implementing NAIS, R-CALF USA informed DeLauro that the U.S. needs to develop a national strategy to improve livestock disease prevention, control and eradication. “Other than a resounding call for ‘No NAIS,’ the NAIS listening sessions held so far reveal that USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) is violating the very principles of an effective disease strategy by

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inviting the introduction of foreign animal diseases into the U.S. livestock herd,” the letter continues. Farmers and ranchers from across the U.S. have testified at the listening sessions

“. . . we are urging the entire Congress to follow DeLauro’s lead by putting a stop to NAIS.” held so far that USDA is knowingly introducing bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) from Canada, bovine tuberculosis (TB) from Mexico, fever ticks from Mexico, and also is trying to relax restrictions against foot and mouth disease (FMD) from South America. “It is unconscionable that USDA is knowingly introducing dangerous diseases into the U.S. while simultaneously blaming livestock producers for not cooperating with its failed NAIS program,” said R-CALF USA President/Region VI Director Max Thornsberry, a Missouri veterinarian

who also chairs the group’s animal health committee. “U.S. producers devote their lives to ensuring the health of their livestock only to have USDA purposely expose their herds to avoidable diseases. This is exactly the opposite of what we should expect from our government.” R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard testified at the NAIS listening session held in Rapid City, S.D., on June 11 and provided a list of USDA actions that demonstrate the agency has turned its back on protecting the health of the U.S. livestock herd. “We have informed Chairwoman DeLauro that R-CALF USA has provided an eight-point plan that should serve as a starting point for the development of a national disease strategy that would better protect the health of our livestock and the safety of meat produced from our livestock,” Bullard said. “Once NAIS is declared officially abandoned, we are hopeful that USDA will redirect its resources to begin development of a national disease prevention, control and eradication strategy. Meanwhile, we are urging the entire Congress to follow DeLauro’s ■ lead by putting a stop to NAIS.”

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JULY 2009

NMS July 2009 Directory  

Directory of Southwestern Agriculture

NMS July 2009 Directory  

Directory of Southwestern Agriculture