posted March 15, 2005
On Jan. 25, the Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service announced the launch of a Web site to inform stakeholders about the National Animal Identification System. The site, www.usda.gov/nais, is designed to be a one-stop resource for facts about the NAIS.
"We hope our stakeholders will visit the site frequently to find out the latest news about the NAIS from a national perspective," said APHIS administrator, Dr. W. Ron DeHaven. "It will be updated regularly as new information becomes available."
The site features national news and contact information for state and tribal animal health authorities. States and tribes are responsible for providing each premises under their purview with a nationally unique identification number—the starting point of the NAIS. By mid-2005, all states should be able to assign nationally unique premises identification numbers to locations where animals are managed or held.
Over time, APHIS plans to add resources targeted to specific species and industry-segment groups. Currently, NAIS working groups comprising industry and government representatives have been established for cattle and bison, sheep, swine, poultry, horses, llamas and alpacas, deer and elk, and livestock markets and processors.
In implementing the NAIS, the USDA goal is to provide animal health officials the ability to identify all animals and premises that have had contact with a foreign or domestic animal disease of concern within 48 hours after discovery. As an information system that provides for rapid tracing of infected and exposed animals during an outbreak situation, the NAIS will help limit the scope of such outbreaks and ensure that they are contained and eradicated as quickly as possible.
With the recent passage of the fiscal year 2005 Consolidated Appropriations Act, APHIS will receive approximately $33 million for NAIS implementation. The USDA also transferred $18.8 million from its Commodity Credit Corporation to APHIS during FY 2004 to support the NAIS.