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USDA Details 2018 Farm Bill Funding for Foot and Mouth Disease Preparedness

September 4, 2019

The USDA announced August 12 that it will be using resources from the 2018 Farm Bill for new animal health activities, including two new programs, the National Animal Vaccine and Veterinary Countermeasures Bank and the National Animal Disease Preparedness and Response program. These programs will help dairy producers in the event of an outbreak.

In 2019, the funding will also make up to $10 million available for the existing National Animal Health Laboratory Network and the disease preparedness and response program, both important initiatives that will help coordinate stakeholders in the event of an outbreak. “These three programs will work together to protect and improve the health of our nation’s livestock, helping farmers and ranchers provide high-quality agricultural products to consumers here and abroad,” the USDA said in its announcement.

NMPF is excited to see the USDA moving forward with these new programs, which were identified as key priorities by the NMPF Foot and Mouth Disease task force five years ago.  Formed in 2014, the task force participated in five webinars to learn and discuss foot and mouth disease preparedness before making recommendations to the Animal Health and Wellbeing committee and later, to the NMPF Board of Directors. These recommendations included a focus on vaccines, and laboratory and field diagnostics. The full list of recommendations can be found here.

Upon approval of these recommendations, NMPF joined a coalition of stakeholders to obtain new preparedness funding in the 2018 Farm Bill. The task force also developed on-farm biosecurity and FMD preparedness educational materials with partners including USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, American Association of Bovine Practitioners, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the Center for Food Security and Public Health at Iowa State University.