National Animal Identification System (NAIS)

An interview with Linda Faillace, author of Mad Sheep

The National Animal Identification System is another of those government ideas that sounds so right on the surface but goes so wrong in the implementation details. Basically, it is a nationwide registration system for animals and the sites where they are kept. It has been causing a major uproar within the farming community, as it is a burden to small farmers, among others.

It will affect you too if you keep any sort of farm animals such as chickens, sheep, goats, horses, etc.—but if you do, you undoubtedly already know this.

We’ve been preparing a piece on this subject, but in the process we came across this video that gives you an excellent summary of what’s involved. So we thought we’d provide a video introduction, then look to converting our investigative reporting to a background article or editorial.

Most of our readers have probably never heard of NAIS. If you fall into that category, the video below will be a real eye-opener. The presenter is Linda Faillace, author of Mad Sheep:The True Story Behind the USDA’s War on a Family Farm, who knows a thing or two about dealing with the USDA as a small farmer.

Don’t forget to click on Leave a Comment (in the grey bar below the video) and let us know what you think about this issue, as with all our posts.

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2 Responses to “National Animal Identification System (NAIS)”

  1. esbee Says:

    Thanks for telling people about NAIS.
    I am amazed that NAIS is not being covered on conservative talk radio….the one time I did call in the host poopooed me and accused me of wanting to get everyone else angry because I was. It was Mark Davis WBAP Dallas and he even supports smokers’ rights, but thought I was crazy. And yes, I am angry at having my constitutional amendments broken, my freedoms taken away just to benefit big ag!!!! He just did not get it.

    The comments from the citizens of the USA at the USDA/NAIS listening sessions all across the US have been OVERWHELMINGLY AGAINST NAIS. When Rhonda Perry of Howard County, Missouri testified at the USDA listening session, representing herself as a small livestock producer and 5600 families of the Missouri Rural Crises Center, the points she made are salient:
    1. NAIS is a solution in search of a problem;
    2. the problems NAIS is intended to address come from the processing plants, imported meat, and large industrial livestock operations that are wreaking havoc in rural areas, none of which is the fault of the small producer;
    3. it is these very operations that the government is supplementing, in one way or another, with taxpayer money while ignoring the problems inherent with the operations; yet it is the small producer who the USDA is trying to saddle with this costly program;
    4. while NAIS cannot track the bad product from the processing plant to the consumer, which is what needs to be done, NAIS wants to track the product from the processing plant back to the producer when what happens at the processing plant it is not the fault of the producers.
    Her testimony was right on the mark and makes it very apparent that NAIS is not about animal health, consumer health, international markets, traceability or terrorism, NAIS is about money, power and control, all intended to put the small producer out of business.

  2. Bill Suydam Says:

    The irony about NAIS is that it’s a great idea—if you apply it to factory farming and factory farmers only. It should have nothing at all to do with small farmers, organic farmers and private individuals (as opposed to corporations). But the way NAIS is set up, the big corporations get a pass. All they have to report is that they have 300,000 head of cattle at a certain location in Wyoming. They’re not required to put individual taqs on their animals the way small farmers and individuals are.

    The whole point behind NAIS is—or at least should be—food safety. Yet the food safety issues always come into play when you have big farms, big slaughterhouses and process plants. The Amish farmer raising a small herd of cattle organically simply isn’t posing any great danger to the food supply.

    Yet that’s the type of individual the NAIS is going after.

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