Kentucky state agriculture officials are working to get the word out about new tagging requirements for cattle. The official change is a few years off, but some steps can be taken as soon as the end of this year.
State Veterinarian Robert Stout says the federal government is requiring the use of radio frequency identification tags for cattle by 2023.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture order calls for the phasing out of metal tags. Stout says the USDA states such a move improves the ability to trace animal movement quickly and efficiently, in the event of a livestock disease outbreak.
Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles says in the coming weeks and months his agency will work with producers and industry organizations to help with an orderly transition to RFID ear tags.
Starting this December, free metal National Uniform Ear Tag System tags will no longer be provided by the federal and state Ag departments.
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