AT first glance, the plan by the federal Department of Agriculture to battle disease among
farm animals is a technological marvel: we farmers tag every head of
livestock in the country with ID chips and the department
electronically tracks the animals’ whereabouts. If disease breaks out,
the department can identify within 48 hours which animals are ill,
where they are, and what other animals have been exposed.
time when diseases like mad cow and bird flu have made consumers
worried about food safety, being able to quickly track down the cause
of an outbreak seems like a good idea. Unfortunately, the plan, which
is called the National Animal Identification System and is the subject
of a House subcommittee hearing today, would end up rewarding the
factory farms whose practices encourage disease while crippling small
farms and the local food movement.
READ MORE : Op-Ed Contributor - Tag, We’re It - Pitfalls of an Animal ID System - NYTimes.com