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Livestock ID program intended to track disease

by 5m Editor
16 October 2006, at 9:34am

US - Should mad cow disease or Avian flu find its way to a Des Moines County livestock herd, the disease could spread to 24 states within five days, said Byron Leu, Iowa State University Extension center livestock field specialist.

Within a month, he said, the disease could spread to 40 states. And that's under normal livestock movement. While the odds are slim of that happening (the last large–scale outbreak was Newcastle disease in 2002), the U.S. Department of Agriculture and National Institute of Animal Agriculture have been working the past four years on a national animal identification system.

The idea is to prevent the spread of disease, whether it occurs naturally or by bio–terrorists.
Once fully in effect, the system will allow officials to track diseased and potentially diseased livestock within 48 hours. Now, that process can take days or even years, said Dore Mobley, public affairs specialist with Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, part of the USDA.

Source: The Hawkeye

5m Editor