"We Don't Need No Stinkin Barcodes" say cattlemen, in the WSJ.
A Wall Street Journal article - page A3 - called "In a Beef Over Branding" reports that some cattle ranchers are resistant to the idea of giving every single head of cattle a unique barcode to track them from birth to slaughter. According to the article, some ranchers value the cultural tradition, and others are opposed to government regulation. An executive of R-Calf - The Rancher-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund which represents thousands of cattle producers, says that unique registration of the 93 million cattle in the United States is unnecessary. Yet, in the past, tracking the history of cattle infected with mad-cow disease has proven difficult.
Other ranchers are more progressive however. The Seminole Tribe of Florida has use bar code ID tags for years in a USDA pilot program and has found that the tags helped the tribe obtain a premium price.
New rules are due out in several weeks mandating that every cow have a unique identifier. While ranchers may find it annoying, beef and bar code enthusiasts will be pleased!
For the complete WSJ article, click here