NMPF Favors USDA Approach on Disease Regionalization Plan with Canada
The National Milk Producers Federation on July 14th endorsed a draft plan for allowing the U.S. and Canada to cope with an outbreak of a serious foreign animal contagion, such as foot-and-mouth disease, suggesting the plan is a template for similar plans involving other important dairy export markets.
The plan, drafted by the Agriculture Department’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, calls for the United States and Canada to recognize each other’s efforts to control an outbreak, while regionalizing how the outbreak is handled, so as to allow continued trade with disease-free areas of the country.
NMPF's comments noted that Canada is an important market for U.S. dairy products, and that an outbreak of a highly contagious animal disease such as FMD in either country could be catastrophic for the U.S. dairy industry.
Those comments came three months after NMPF expressed concerns with USDA's plan to allow more beef exports from Brazil - a nation with a history of FMD problems.
In comments submitted April 22, 2014, NMPF stated that it supports animal product import rules based on scientifically informed principles and consistent with the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines. NMPF had concerns regarding the resources and the infrastructure of Brazil to consistently perform adequate risk management in order to mitigate the risk for the introduction of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) into the United States through the importation of fresh Brazilian beef.
NMPF and Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy Release Booklet on Animal Care Practices
NMPF has a created a new booklet explaining how dairy farmers provide care for their cows. The 7-page document, produced in the spring of 2014 in conjunction with the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, provides a series of answers to commonly-asked questions about dairy production and animal care.
Those questions include:
- What do cows eat?
- Where do they live?
- How are calves cared for?
- How are the animals kept healthy?
- What makes a farm organic?
The booklet also explains how particpation in the National Dairy FARM program demonstrates a farm's commitment to the best animal care practices.