In order to promote food safety and animal health, a project was created to provide electronic identification for cattle and to provide animal disease traceability (ADT). The goal was to increase the accuracy, efficiency, and cost effectiveness of collecting key pieces of traceability information, while supporting the cattle industry’s management and marketing needs. Working with researchers from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and on behalf of the USDA, the project demonstrated how to link RFID tags with other identification devices to collect animal movement and disease data. A primary objective was to learn more about how adding RFID functionality will support traceability in high-volume, fast-paced environments.
ADT helps health officials know where diseased and at-risk animals are, where they’ve been, and when. This helps ensure a rapid response during disease events, which can reduce the number of animals and the response time, ultimately reducing the economic impact on owners and affected communities.