The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) in a Federal Register notice proposed to amend its domestic livestock regulations in order to enhance the traceability of animals in the United States. These proposed changes would require that when animal identification numbers (AINs) are used, only those numbers beginning with the 840 prefix will be recognized as official for use on all AIN tags applied to animals one year or more after the date on which this proposed rule is finalized.
In addition, APHIS is proposing to require that all new premises identification numbers (PINs) that are issued on or after the effective date of this rule use the seven-character alphanumeric code format. Official eartags that use a premises based numbering system issued after a one-year phase-in period will be required to use the seven-character alphanumeric code format as well.
Several changes pertaining to the use of the U.S. shield on official eartags, numbering systems that use such eartags and the correlation of those numbering systems with the PIN are also being proposed.
These proposed changes are intended to achieve greater standardization and uniformity of official numbering systems and eartags used in animal disease programs and to enhance animal traceability.
Comments received on or before March 16, 2009, will be considered. Complete details can be accessed at http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/E9-353.htm.