Being sold to the public as a means of safety and protection from disease for the consumer, it's just another step towards a world whereby all that we do, including owning a horse or llama to what animals we choose to have on our land to feed ourselves, is monitored. Here's what the USDA website has to say: To protect the health of U.S. livestock and poultry and the economic well-being of those industries, we must be able to quickly and effectively trace an animal disease to its source.
Talk about propaganda and public pandering. These are the same people who have refused to allow testing of cows for mad cow disease. These are the same people who have allowed the use of hormones and antibiotics in our meat and dairy supply. These are the same people who have allowed cows to eat cows. They want to protect you and me? Please. Tell us another line of shit. Make it more colorful so as not to blind us all.If this plan isn't ridiculous (not to mention invasive) enough, whenever the animal is moved away from the home property, say to travel to a fair or take a simple trip to the vet, that movement must be documented and reported.
This would affect every one of us. Here's what this System would lead to: (taken from NoNais.Org):
Consumers will face higher meat prices under NAIS because the cost of producing meat will go up with the addition of fees to the government to support the NAIS program. The cost of other foods, like vegetables, will likely also go up as well since the manure from meat animals is used to fertilize the soil to grow better crops. Most importantly, NAIS will result in many small farms going out of business. The consolidation of the meat industry into fewer, big, agri-biz producers means they will have more control of the market and be able to charge higher prices for the same product.
Pet owners will be forced to register their family horse, pet sheep, llamas and other ‘livestock’ that aren’t part of the food chain. This will cost them money and be a hassle with paperwork and premise ID fees each year. Furthermore, every time you want to take your pet to the vet, on a trail ride or even just cross the road you’ll have to submit paperwork with the government and probably pay a fee. Every time. In time, they plan to do the same for pet dogs and cats. See PAWS legislation and the Vermont Pet Merchant bill that requires you to register as a pet dealer if you cat has kittens or your dog has puppies.
Children who are in 4-H or Future Farmers of America will have to register their parents house as a farm and get a Premise ID as well as paying the annual fees and doing paper work every time an animal is bought, sold, shown or moved. This will also stifle county fairs which are already on fragile footing. Figure you’ll not be seeing livestock at fairs of the future - there will just be the midway and amusement rides that are poorly inspected, but no animals.
Homesteaders, people who grow some of their own food, will have to register with the government as a farm and obtain a Premise ID. They’ll also have to pay the annual fees associated with that and fill out the paperwork on all of their livestock. Every time you have chicks, goats, piglets or other animals born you’ll need to register it with the government. Every time an animal dies you’ll have to register it with the government. Got a predator problem? Expect to fill out a lot of paperwork. Have an animal escape the fence and cross the road or go onto a neighbor’s property? Fill out more forms and the neighbor may have to fill out forms, too. Animals come on to your property uninvited? More forms. And no, there are no exceptions. Every livestock animal must be registered, tagged and tracked from birth to death.
Small Farmers who sell direct to their customers will be devastated. Small farmers already work at higher costs than the big factory farms. Under NAIS they’ll have to identify each and every animal at a high cost because they can’t use the group identification techniques of the big Agri-Biz corporations. The big guys do all-in/all-out animal management. Each mass group of animals are of one gene stock and the same age. The factory farms need only apply for one ID to cover the entire group of thousands of animals. Small, traditional-style farmers have many, genetically diverse animals of different ages on their farms. Each individual animal will be required to have an ID. The result is that the cost of farming will go up greatly for small farmers. This is likely to be the final nail in the coffin of small farming.
FMI, including how to get involved to stop this from becoming a reality, check out the NoNais website.
So far, this movement is voluntary, although given a report I heard tonight on the Matrix News Network by Judith McGreary, attorney and member of the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance, the USDA has been putting pressure on folks at the state level to begin compliance with the system. For example, farmers who have been affected by drought have been told they must comply with the tagging system if they wish to receive federal funds.
Update: As a commenter pointed out, this is not a movement. It is a mandate. Check out her comment--she also has a book out on the market about this topic. I also wanted to post another website dedicate to stopping it. I reference it above, but failed to provide the link to the website. Freedom Farm Alliance. On the site, they have a pdf file that includes a link to sending your message or your story (if you own livestock) to the USDA. You have until MARCH 16th, 2009 to do this. There's also a link to contact your state rep. to share your concerns.