Ranchers taking cattle to Canada will have to meet new restrictions


Teresa Clark for The Fence Post

November 10, 2017


Breeding cattle being exported into Canada will sport a new ear tag with radio frequency capabilities starting Feb. 1, 2018. A new ruling issued by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency will require U.S. cattlemen exporting dairy or beef breeding cattle into the country to identify these animals with an NAIS-compliant 840 Radio Frequency tag, and a tattoo. These tags will be mandatory, beginning Feb. 1, 2018.


The 840 AIN ear tags with Radio Frequency Identification technology will replace the metal USDA tags previously used to identify breeding cattle from the U.S. "Previously, all breeding cattle exported to Canada were identified with both a USDA metal ear tag and a USA tattoo," according to Donna Karlsons, who is a public affairs specialist with USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.


The new program will eliminate duplicity, Karlsons said. "All cattle in Canada have been required to be identified with approved RFID tags since 2010," she said. "For U.S. exporters of breeding cattle, this will eliminate the need for re-tagging animals after their arrival in Canada."


Because it is a Canadian regulation, it will be up to their government to enforce it, Karlsons said. "If breeding cattle arrive at the border without RFID tags on or after Feb. 1, 2018, the Canadian government will deny entry in Canada."


For cattle breeders who sell breeding stock to Canadian buyers, Karlsons said they should update themselves on the new regulations. "We always recommend that breeders who have international buyers at their sales be aware of export requirements that other countries may have, including identification requirements, along with other animal health requirements such as specific tests or certification," she said...