SDStockgrowerstakepartinani.cfm SD Stockgrowers take part in animal ID conference
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SD Stockgrowers take part in animal ID conference

South Dakota

South Dakota Stockgrowers Association District 12 Director Chris Harvey, Valentine, Neb., represented the Stockgrowers at the annual meeting of the National Institute of Animal Agriculture meeting in Louisville, Ky., March 31 and April 1.

Harvey thought it was a worthwhile trip and believes it was important that the Stockgrowers participated in the meeting. He traveled with SDSGA member Louis Day, Valentine, Neb., who attended the meeting on behalf of R-CALF USA. "The first day everyone kind of kept their distance from us, I guess because they didn't know us. But the second day we all warmed up to each other and Louis and I had the chance to explain to lots of folks just why we are opposed to a mandatory National Animal Identification Program," said Harvey.

Harvey said he spoke with animal identification officials from Virginia, Minnesota and Canada, just to name a few.

"You never know for sure what kind of an impact you have on people, but I really think that some of the points we made were sinking in. They seemed genuinely interested in our concerns and thoughts," said Harvey.

The NIAA is the organization that focuses mostly on animal health issues and has been viewed as a supporter of animal identification for several years. According to Harvey, the Stockgrowers have tried to participate in the NIAA Animal ID Info Expo and/or their annual meeting for the past several years in an effort to ensure that the independent producers' voice is heard.

"It's important that we have been involved, and that we remain involved in all animal id discussions," said Harvey. "The Stockgrowers and R-CALF are two of the cattle producer organizations who have voiced strong opposition to a mandatory animal id program, and we believe we've been successful in preventing the implementation of such a program. We have to continue to stay involved in order to keep reminding the country that we already have identification programs that work well in the cattle industry."



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