Michigan Department of Ag (MDA) Director Don Koivisto says Michigan cattle producers have purchased more than 1 million electronic ID (EID) tags. Michigan has about 12,000 cattle farms and 1.2 million cattle.

As of March 1, 2007, all cattle leaving Michigan premises must be tagged with a radio-frequency ID (RFID) tag. Although USDA has made the National Animal Identification System voluntary, Michigan premises registration and the Michigan Animal Identification System was established to aid efforts in eradication of bovine tuberculosis (TB) and the program is mandatory in Michigan, MDA says.

“Over 11,000 Michigan farms supported this milestone by purchasing ear tags as part of our effort to eradicate TB from Michigan,” Koivisto says. “These RFID tags are helping protect the food supply by providing source verification and 48-hour traceability.”

Through the collaborative efforts of Michigan State University Extension, the Michigan Cattlemen's Association, the Michigan Milk Producers Association, Michigan Farm Bureau, USDA and MDA, compliance with the cattle tagging requirements at livestock markets is 95-98%, MDA says.

CyberCampfire webcasts

As a service to all cattle producers, BEEF magazine and the North American Limousin Foundation (NALF) will co-host two free CyberCampfire webcasts on DVAuction.com in December. The first will address crossbreeding strategies on Dec. 11. The second, which Five Star Cattle Systems will sponsor on Dec. 18, will deal with bull-buying strategies. Both webcasts begin at 7 p.m. MT.

Participation in an interactive Cyber-Campfire producer-outreach webcast requires registration with DVAuction.com beforehand.

The “Programs” section of the NALF Web site includes an archive of the visual, audio and supplemental materials from past webcasts.