Beef industry experts respond to MDA's trich regulation
The Missouri Department of Agriculture on Sept. 26 heard from 10 industry experts regarding proposed changes to the department’s rule regarding trichomoniasis. These individuals were part of an objective group of industry leaders formed by the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association to review the rule changes published Sept. 3. The comments submitted make clear the need to ensure this animal disease is controlled in Missouri, while also minimizing unintended consequences to cattle producers and the entire beef industry.
The most concern involved the department’s proposed plan for reclassification of a bull than tested positive but was not actually infected with the disease. The group worries the proposed rule “could result in a huge financial burden to cattlemen, resulting in hundreds or thousands of dollars worth of testing expenses.” Specifically, the group stated the rule “would essentially force a farmer or rancher to pay for all testing of any animal(s) or herd(s) the state veterinarian chooses.”
According to MCA President Chuck Massengill, the group agrees the owner of the livestock should pay for all additional retesting expenses, but should not be forced to pay for all testing of adjacent herds or other animals the state veterinarian chooses.
“Although rare, there is such a thing as a false positive test for trich. It is paramount that this rule provides an effective appeal process for reclassification of a test positive bull providing subsequent tests and an epidemiological investigation is conducted,” said Massengill. “Forcing producers to do the job of the department is unacceptable.”
While the group had several modifications to the proposed rule, it did commend MDA for requiring trich-positive herds and other herds that were or may have been in contact with the positive herd to undergo an epidemiological investigation. The group believes this is a legitimate step in the right direction.
Massengill said comments are due Oct. 3 and encourages fellow cattlemen to submit comments in support of the working group’s recommendations.
Go to http://capwiz.com/beefusa/mo/issues/alert/?alertid=62949386 to easily submit comments now.
The Missouri Cattlemen’s Association was initiated in 1911 and is dedicated to improving viability of Missouri’s beef industry. MCA is celebrating its 101st year serving as the voice of Missouri’s 60,000 beef producers. The organization has members from over 100 of Missouri’s 114 counties. MCA is a not-for-profit, grassroots, member-driven organization focused on the protection and promotion of the economic, educational, political and social interests of the Missouri beef cattle industry. Contact MCA at 573-499-9162 or at www.mocattle.com.