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Friday, November 02, 2007

A Moment of silence for Illinois.

A mandatory NAIS is fast upon us. This is why I have been writting so much on it lately. If you suport the National Animal Identifaction system, or not, you need to be aware of what is going on. And I know that many people have no idea what NAIS is. This program has been kept very quiet. That alone should concern you.

I have told you how the USDA is giving money to groups like Future Farmers of America, so that they will "teach" our children about NAIS. The Colorado State Fair is just one example of groups forcing parents of 4-Hers to register their premises as a farm. This doesn't mean only those of you that live in the country. If you breed rabbits in you surburban backyard, your house must also be registered.

New rule applies to all livestock exhibitors and takes effect next year

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A premises identification number will be required to exhibit livestock at state, county, 4-H and FFA fairs beginning in 2008, the Illinois Department of Agriculture announced today.

Premises registration is the first step toward the establishment of a National Animal Identification System (NAIS) and will greatly improve the ability of Illinois animal health professionals to contain disease outbreaks.

“Knowing the location of each and every livestock operation in the state would enable us to quickly trace the movement of infected animals, impose quarantines and, perhaps, prevent the disease from spreading to neighboring farms if an outbreak were to occur,” Agriculture Director Chuck Hartke said. “The information is absolutely critical to our disease-fighting capabilities, especially at events like fairs where large numbers of animals are confined for short periods of time and then moved. This is one, reasonable step we can take to protect not only the health of livestock, but also the livelihood of the entire livestock industry.” Press release continues here>>>>

You need to remember that most of the food borne illnesses that humans catch are due to mishandling of raw foods. If you get e-coli from eating a hamburger, it was either becase you yourself had touched something, say a grocery cart that the person before you had touched, a person that didn't wash their hands after going to the rest room, then you improperly washed you hands before eating or cooking. Or the food handler neglected handwashing as well, or perhaps the processing plant.

BSE aka madcow disease is caused by feeding cattle, who are normally herbivores, the remains of other cattle in the form of meat and bone meal, which caused the infectious agent to spread. How many family farms practice this? This is something that the stockyards tend to do, regulating and inspecting would decrease this practice.

Avian flu, from the CDC website;

Infection with avian influenza viruses in domestic poultry causes two main forms of disease that are distinguished by low and high extremes of virulence. The “low pathogenic” form may go undetected and usually causes only mild symptoms (such as ruffled feathers and a drop in egg production). However, the highly pathogenic form spreads more rapidly through flocks of poultry. This form may cause disease that affects multiple internal organs and has a mortality rate that can reach 90-100% often within 48 hours. more here>>>>

Did you read that? 90-100% DEATH in 48 hours. NAIS is a track back system that works on a 48 hour system. In the state of Kansas, when a bird is found dead, you make a call and know within hours what it is. This disease is preventable in humans by taking proper precautions, like hand washing. I haven't heard of anyone getting ill because they ate a sick bird.

Outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease have resulted in the slaughter of millions of animals, despite this being a frequently non-fatal disease. The destruction of animals is primarily to prevent the disease from spreading throughout herds intended for human consumption or producing milk. Due to international efforts to eradicate the disease, infection would also lead to trade bans being imposed on affected countries. Foot-and-mouth disease, was eradicated from the United States in 1929. {No high tech tracking was needed then}

Humans can contract vesicular stomatitis when handling affected animals if proper biosafety methods are not followed.

There is no specific treatment or cure for vesicular stomatitis. Owners can protect their animals from this disease by avoiding congregation of animals in the vicinity where vesicular stomatitis has occurred. Mild antiseptic mouthwashes may bring comfort and more rapid recovery to an affected animal. Good sanitation and quarantine practices on affected farms usually contain the infection until it dies out of its own accord. More from APHIS

These are the major animal diseases that the USDA will prevent with a 48 hour tracking system. NAIS will prevent biological warfare from terrorists by tracking the illness back to the original owner, and they can link this to terrorist activity how? I am trying, really trying to understand why I must give up my freedoms to pursue my happiness so that the USDA can cause a false sense of security for the general public.

Education of food, education of handling and the USDA actually inspecting slaughterhouses, instead of waiting to be sued by the houses, might help a tad better then the NAIS system.

The USDA also says that NAIS is not for household pets. Yet non-working horses and my goats will be required under this "voluntary" program to have the tags. Trina {the goat in my title area} won't look good in earrings, she's a natural beauty. One piece of good news however, is that if your animals never leave the farm where they are born, you do not have to tag them. So buy your animals before the "voluntary" program becomes mandatory in your state.


Queen Whackamole said...

Ma, it's rough to be a farmer in Illinois. Illinois also started taxing pumpkins this year. Hideous.

Phelan said...

That's silly! I eat my pumpkins.

Gina said...

I just put a bit about Iowa also taxing pumpkins due to not being food items *anymore*!!

Thanks for continuing the update and fight against NAIS. I will put a bit and link on my blog.

Gina said...

I should also point out the obvious for know reason to "the choir", but NAIS is a type of tax on our livestock.

Green Eyes said...

I was just about to do a post on NAIS... it's good to see someone blogging about it. The worst part is how sneaky they are being about this... first it was "mandatory someday" then it was "not yet mandatory" then strictly "voluntary," but now they're coming in through the back door, in a sense, using 4H and the like. Grrr.

MommyMommy said...

okay so I have a question. I want to make sure I understand fully. If I buy some chicks from a hatchery, I would have to register my property, and the chicks, but any chicks they have on the farm, that stay on the farm, do not have to be registered? Same with cows, right? But wouldn't my property still be registered from the initial cow/ chick purchase? So wouldn't they still be able to come on my farm and do whatever? Or once we eat or sell all the originally registered animals can we unregidter our premisises?

Confusing I know, but I am still trying to grasp it all.

Phelan said...

Gina, my goodness when did we stop eating pumpkins!?! We have had a mold problem here the last 2 years, so there is a shortage. I guess I need to do some pupmpkin edible education.

green eyes, I agree they are too sneaky and using our children is plain wrong.

Phelan said...

mommymommy, first I am so glad you are interested in what is going on. Now, let's get you some answers.

If I buy some chicks from a hatchery, I would have to register my property, and the chicks, yes but any chicks they have on the farm, that stay on the farm, do not have to be registered? correct, unless that is you indtend to sell them or give them away, then they must have their own id Same with cows, right? yes, any animal that is considered edible must be registered, if they might possibly leave your property But wouldn't my property still be registered from the initial cow/ chick purchase? right, this is called premise id. You will be listed as a farm, even if you only own one or two 4-H rabbits. So wouldn't they still be able to come on my farm and do whatever? you do not even have to be registered for them to come on your land a depopulate or force tagging. If the USDA thinks that they may be a problem, weather or not your animals leave your property, under NAIS, even in this voluntary stage, they can get warrents and come onto your property. They do not have to do any testing to even see if your animals are sick. They will be allowed to depopulate without compensation. And you will not be allowed to repopulate until they say you can Or once we eat or sell all the originally registered animals can we unregidter our premisises? no, once you are registered, or purchase a registered animal, you may not remove the tags without penalty. Unregistering your premise takes court actions. They are reports of the USDA registering people without consent. These people are taking them to court.

In theory, it would be a good idia to buy your livestock before this becomes manadory. The problem though is that once your orginal animals are beyond breeding age, you have to repopulate with an outside source or risk inbreeding. Not something you really want. NAIS will stop many of us from doing this, as you will not be able to sell, buy or trade livestock with out the mark...I mean tags.

Hopefully I answered your question. If not, please tell me to expand on something. I am always happy to try and answer a question.

farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

Are we going to lose Phelan?

Phelan said...

Monica, There are times when I feel that we will lose. Too many people don't grasp what NAIS actualy means. They are not sure how any of this will affect them. We have to keep up writting, informing them that NAIS means you can say god bye to the small farms and homesteads, and hello to food monopoly.

I fear I am risking my freedom my speaking out so much. I read the stories of others that are vocal about NAIS, those that oppose it. They are losing their livestock, they are having tags forced onto their livestock. I fear I may end up in jail. But as long as I can speak, and as long as I can write, I will fight this. I will help get us closer to a victory. And I know that you will too.

What we need is a reconizable voice. I have written a few letters to some people that are well known to the pulic, and that I feel would be outraged about NAIS, if they knew about it. We will see what happens with that.

I know it feels helpless. I have those days as well. But we can't stop.

Stephanie said...

Yeah we are totally screwed here now. We want animals when we get a place :(

Phelan said...

Stephanie, you are not compeletly screwed. Tagging is required for exhibit. You can still buy untagged livestock, just don't buy them at auction.

Anita said...

I am still completely comfused...I get the general concept, though, and all I can think is...

"Its starting..."

Phelan said...

Anita, I do not want you confused on this at all. Please ask what you need to. I want you to understand so you can make your decision. And there are many different connection to the phrase. . .it's starting

Robbyn said...

Hello?? Do we still live under a constitution??

I'm really really really angry about this. What a snow job.

Gina said...

Phelan, did you hear about the big Cargill meat recall? E. coli again. We all know that this is the biggest problem with the US CAFO meat system is not the things they are "attempting" to track/control thru the NAIS-it's E.coli and other problems associated with the mind numbingly fast-paced meat processing system. No amount of mandatory or voluntary NAIS is going to remedy these problems!!!

I am reading Diet for a Dying Planet. It reads like a college term paper, but it is scary, scary, scary. After I am done (it may be a couple of weeks) would you like it. It'll give you ammunition for the fight, including statistics and examples of the gross neglect of USDA and their friends The Industry.

I have a lot of fears of retatilation too. I fear for my job (maybe this would not be so bad), my freedom, my self-sufficiency and way of life, my children's future...

I hope there are enough of us to band together: Safety in numbers, y'know!

As for the pumpkins, they number one type is the type used for Jack O'lanterns (Connecticut field, I think) and not grown for food. it is more hollow with less seed and meat. Sadly, pumkins and squash are very, very nutrituious, easy to grow and could provide a lot of food to the masses. I only buy/grow pumpkins that we eat (sometimes we sacrifice one or two for Jacks if I have a good crop or find them cheap somewhere).

Another sad part to this is that things like pre-packaged "junk foods" and soda pop are still tax free food items. WTF???

Phelan said...

Robbyn, Penn Julliet, from Penn and Teller, said the other day, that we are no longer allowed to fail, and that is the most unAmerican thing there is. I agree with him. We are scared, not just of failure, but of everything. And because of the we are giving up our civil liberties. Funny, that NAIS is about terroism. They do not like how we live so we create laws so that we no longer live how we are.

Gina, exactly. As I said, food Borne illness, like e-coli do not come from the meat, it comes from mishandeling, primarly people not washing their hands after going to the bathroom. I say lets' start a edible pumpkin campign, you with me?

Phelan said...

I should also state, that e-coli is also a natural bactira that harbors in the intestinal tract of not just humans but in cattle. Inproper butchering can cause contamination.

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