Tyson Foods Joins Cattle Tracing Program

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Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale said Wednesday it is joining U.S. CattleTrace, a program that is designed to track disease in cattle.

The company, through its Tyson Fresh Meats subsidiary, said it was the first processing company to join the program. U.S. CattleTrace was developed by cattlemen’s organizations in several states to help health officials respond quickly to disease outbreaks in U.S. cattle. 

“Animal health and disease traceability are critical issues for the meat industry and we’re hopeful our involvement will help advance industry efforts to implement this program across the country,” said Shane Miller, group president of Tyson Fresh Meats. “We believe CattleTrace can help to reduce the risk that animal disease poses to the U.S. cattle supply, while also protecting our industry’s access to important export markets, which can quickly be compromised in the event of an animal health issue.”

CattleTrace uses ear tags that collect data on the subject animal. In case of a disease outbreak, the animal can be tracked from its birth location to each stop it made before reaching a processing plant. 

The program was launched in 2018 as a pilot initiative through a partnership between Kansas State University, the Kansas Livestock Association and the Kansas Department of Agriculture.