Animal Identification

Electronic ID Transition Working Group

Animal identification and animal disease traceability systems are hot topics in the livestock community today.

USDA has indicated repeatedly that they want real time animal tracking/traceability to occur for cattle, sheep, pigs, and goats.

The following appears on the USDA Sheep and Goat identification website: “APHIS is working with sheep and goat organizations to develop a plan for transitioning toward electronic identification to improve our nation’s ability to quickly trace exposed and diseased animals in the event of an outbreak.”

Concerned that the USDA will at some future time impose a plan of their own for the sheep industry, the industry has begun to consider how best to accommodate a transition toward electronic identification.

In 2020, the ASI’s Animal Health Committee convened a small working group of diverse and knowledgeable industry representatives and subject matter experts to develop a blueprint for the transition away from visual ID tags to EID tags.

The group is led by ASI Animal Health Committee Co-Chairs, Dr. Cindy Wolf and Dr. Jim Logan.

A report from the EID Working Group is expected in early 2022.

In 2021, ASI conducted an online survey of more than 500 sheep producers to gather information on industry animal ID practices and perceptions regarding a national animal disease traceability system. Read more about the survey in the links below.

Historical Efforts

Sheep Identification Working Group 2004

A group of industry leaders, led by Dr. Cindy Wolf, co-chair of the ASI Animal Health Committee, convened to develop a well-defined implementation phase-in plan for sheep identification that is consistent with the established standards and goals of the National Animal Identification System (NAIS).

Click on the links below to download the Working Group documents: