USDA has increased funding for continued registration of premises for
its national animal identification system (NAIS), while failing to
address the real job for the program ? animal traceback ? and how the
program can actually work without compromising producer's private data
or increasing production costs.
According to the USDA's Secretary Johanns, more than 80,000 premises
have been registered in the NAIS program, to help trace diseased or
potentially diseased animals to their point of origin more quickly and
efficiently. Currently, 47 states and five tribes have approved
premises registration systems, and APHIS anticipates that all 50 states
will be on board by July, 2005.
At the present time, animal health officials conduct disease trace outs
with local, resident systems that make use of records related to
program diseases, on-farm recordkeeping, and existing interstate
movement certificates and breed registries. However, these
epidemiologic investigations may take from days to weeks to complete
because records are often kept on paper, or they are not standardized
across state lines and International borders.
When local paper-based systems, or even local, resident software system
and databases are used, any national system that still relies on these
data sources for verification is bound to be slow and ineffective. Only
a Web-based data management system can provide an efficient, effective
data collection, storage, and report system with true animal traceback
and traceup. A Web-based system makes it possible for records to move
with the individual animal and related byproducts, which cuts the time
required for source verification to just seconds.
Effective traceback is only possible when each stage of the food
processing and supply system is included. The USDA's NAIS and other
similar tracking systems currently in use or in pilot testing are
incomplete and ineffective since they only are concerned with the
animal's early life history.
All products in the food chain, from the live animal and its origin, to
its associated commodity items, must be identified with a unique number
and labeled by RFID or barcode and included in the traceback system.
All activities and actions performed on the animals must be recorded at
each location ? and identified by a unique Premises IDentification Code
(PIDC) ? in a rancher's field, on a cattle truck, or even in the middle
of a packing plant, all the way to the retailer and consumer.
ScoringAg's Internet-based recordkeeping system and database can meet
the demands of real traceback in real time; provide real compliance
with government traceback and Homeland Security and APHIS regulations;
give producers and industry stakeholders a real marketing advantage
over competitors with PIDC and point-to-point traceback; add proven
value with RFID source verification throughout the Web-based
recordkeeping system; and guarantee confidentiality with a secure
databank that can still deliver Internet-based records anywhere,
anytime, in real time ? only to the owner of the account.
ScoringAg.com and its traceback and traceup system for agriculture
products, featuring Site-Specific Recordkeeping and PIDC location code,
is one of the many divisions of ScoringSystem, Inc., which is located
in Sarasota, Florida USA and specializes in providing solutions with
mobile data, via wireless PDAs, laptops, and Semacode-programmed Nokia,
Siemens, and Sony Ericsson cell phones. Whether using RFID or barcodes
for tracking and traceback of livestock, transport containers or
perishable commodities and other consumer goods, www.ScoringAg.com makes managing data easier ? and does it in an extremely cost effective manner.