Farmers Have Mixed Feelings About I.D. Bill

US - The farm identification bill is supposed to make it easier to track livestock in case of a disease outbreak, but while lawmakers like the idea, it has some farmers concerned.
calendar icon 30 April 2007
clock icon 1 minute read
The discovery of mad cow in Canada got the attention of lawmakers here in the United States and made the need for a livestock tracking system a priority. The law would force farmers with cows, sheep, or other livestock, to get a federal registration code. The code would apply to their entire farm, not individual animals. Many farmers see a benefit to making it easier to track their livestock. "What it's going to do is give the consumer a piece of mind of the safety of the food quality," said Paul Wehrs, a dairy farmer in West Salem, "and that should be worth something to the farmer."

While many farmers support the idea behind the bill they are concerned about the cost. Many farmers in the Amish community, as well as smaller farmers say the bill would be a huge financial burden that they can't afford. Lawmakers agree. "I don't want to see our producers, our farmers the ones accepting sole responsibility for doing this," said Congressman Ron Kind, "if it's important enough for food safety reasons for the country to do, there should be resources then backing up this program, so it's not the individual producers incurring the cost."

Source: WKBT
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