Markets may influence animal ID | TSLN.com

Markets may influence animal ID

Katie Micik

TSLN file photoIf legislation or export markets don't mandate traceability measures and animal ID, the domestic market might as it struggles with consumers lacking confidence in food safety.

OMAHA (DTN) – Nevil Speer started his speech at the Animal ID Info Expo in Kansas City, MO in late August with some not-so-feel-good numbers.

In a 2007 national survey of about 1,000 participants, only 50 percent of consumers said they are confident in their food’s safety. That’s behind their trust in automobiles (83 percent), electronics (80 percent) and pharmaceuticals (51 percent), said the Western Kentucky University agriculture economics professor.

Confidence in the safety of beef, pork and poultry: 46 percent.

“What concerns me is it’s not just the food, but how they perceive us as producers,” said Speer. “Consumer opinions of ranchers and cattlemen – and you can say that’s pretty much a flat line 67 percent (favorable), woohoo.”

However, Speer pointed to 2008 Beef Check-off research that showed consumer opinion was actually higher right after BSE had been found in the U.S. Consumer opinion at that time was 87 percent, but dropped off by 20 percent four years later.

“What have we done wrong?” he asked.

Recommended Stories For You

Speer recalled something Larry Pope, Smithfield’s CEO, said at USDA’s 2008 Outlook Forum: “Every incident causes consumers to trust us a little bit less.” Speer said he wondered if America has reached a tipping point toward increased food traceability.

Speer joins others in the argument that one benefit of animal identification is it could increase domestic and foreign consumers’ confidence in American-raised meats when incorporated into a food traceability system.

Although food safety legislation Congress is considering only applies to FDA-inspected products, like vegetables and seafood, it could pressure animal agriculture markets to increase transparency. Pressure already exists on the global market.

However, some people who oppose USDA’s National Animal Identification System – the current voluntary program that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is reworking – say animal ID is not about food safety. They fear it could be a vehicle that meat processors could use to blame producers for food contamination.

Congress reduced NAIS’s funding from its $14.6 million request to $5.3 million because of low enrollment, even though many legislators support mandatory identification. It’s an animal health program that could double as a food-safety measure in the future, and that’s something Vilsack may consider in the program’s reformation.

OMAHA (DTN) – Nevil Speer started his speech at the Animal ID Info Expo in Kansas City, MO in late August with some not-so-feel-good numbers.

In a 2007 national survey of about 1,000 participants, only 50 percent of consumers said they are confident in their food’s safety. That’s behind their trust in automobiles (83 percent), electronics (80 percent) and pharmaceuticals (51 percent), said the Western Kentucky University agriculture economics professor.

Confidence in the safety of beef, pork and poultry: 46 percent.

“What concerns me is it’s not just the food, but how they perceive us as producers,” said Speer. “Consumer opinions of ranchers and cattlemen – and you can say that’s pretty much a flat line 67 percent (favorable), woohoo.”

However, Speer pointed to 2008 Beef Check-off research that showed consumer opinion was actually higher right after BSE had been found in the U.S. Consumer opinion at that time was 87 percent, but dropped off by 20 percent four years later.

“What have we done wrong?” he asked.

Speer recalled something Larry Pope, Smithfield’s CEO, said at USDA’s 2008 Outlook Forum: “Every incident causes consumers to trust us a little bit less.” Speer said he wondered if America has reached a tipping point toward increased food traceability.

Speer joins others in the argument that one benefit of animal identification is it could increase domestic and foreign consumers’ confidence in American-raised meats when incorporated into a food traceability system.

Although food safety legislation Congress is considering only applies to FDA-inspected products, like vegetables and seafood, it could pressure animal agriculture markets to increase transparency. Pressure already exists on the global market.

However, some people who oppose USDA’s National Animal Identification System – the current voluntary program that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is reworking – say animal ID is not about food safety. They fear it could be a vehicle that meat processors could use to blame producers for food contamination.

Congress reduced NAIS’s funding from its $14.6 million request to $5.3 million because of low enrollment, even though many legislators support mandatory identification. It’s an animal health program that could double as a food-safety measure in the future, and that’s something Vilsack may consider in the program’s reformation.

OMAHA (DTN) – Nevil Speer started his speech at the Animal ID Info Expo in Kansas City, MO in late August with some not-so-feel-good numbers.

In a 2007 national survey of about 1,000 participants, only 50 percent of consumers said they are confident in their food’s safety. That’s behind their trust in automobiles (83 percent), electronics (80 percent) and pharmaceuticals (51 percent), said the Western Kentucky University agriculture economics professor.

Confidence in the safety of beef, pork and poultry: 46 percent.

“What concerns me is it’s not just the food, but how they perceive us as producers,” said Speer. “Consumer opinions of ranchers and cattlemen – and you can say that’s pretty much a flat line 67 percent (favorable), woohoo.”

However, Speer pointed to 2008 Beef Check-off research that showed consumer opinion was actually higher right after BSE had been found in the U.S. Consumer opinion at that time was 87 percent, but dropped off by 20 percent four years later.

“What have we done wrong?” he asked.

Speer recalled something Larry Pope, Smithfield’s CEO, said at USDA’s 2008 Outlook Forum: “Every incident causes consumers to trust us a little bit less.” Speer said he wondered if America has reached a tipping point toward increased food traceability.

Speer joins others in the argument that one benefit of animal identification is it could increase domestic and foreign consumers’ confidence in American-raised meats when incorporated into a food traceability system.

Although food safety legislation Congress is considering only applies to FDA-inspected products, like vegetables and seafood, it could pressure animal agriculture markets to increase transparency. Pressure already exists on the global market.

However, some people who oppose USDA’s National Animal Identification System – the current voluntary program that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is reworking – say animal ID is not about food safety. They fear it could be a vehicle that meat processors could use to blame producers for food contamination.

Congress reduced NAIS’s funding from its $14.6 million request to $5.3 million because of low enrollment, even though many legislators support mandatory identification. It’s an animal health program that could double as a food-safety measure in the future, and that’s something Vilsack may consider in the program’s reformation.

OMAHA (DTN) – Nevil Speer started his speech at the Animal ID Info Expo in Kansas City, MO in late August with some not-so-feel-good numbers.

In a 2007 national survey of about 1,000 participants, only 50 percent of consumers said they are confident in their food’s safety. That’s behind their trust in automobiles (83 percent), electronics (80 percent) and pharmaceuticals (51 percent), said the Western Kentucky University agriculture economics professor.

Confidence in the safety of beef, pork and poultry: 46 percent.

“What concerns me is it’s not just the food, but how they perceive us as producers,” said Speer. “Consumer opinions of ranchers and cattlemen – and you can say that’s pretty much a flat line 67 percent (favorable), woohoo.”

However, Speer pointed to 2008 Beef Check-off research that showed consumer opinion was actually higher right after BSE had been found in the U.S. Consumer opinion at that time was 87 percent, but dropped off by 20 percent four years later.

“What have we done wrong?” he asked.

Speer recalled something Larry Pope, Smithfield’s CEO, said at USDA’s 2008 Outlook Forum: “Every incident causes consumers to trust us a little bit less.” Speer said he wondered if America has reached a tipping point toward increased food traceability.

Speer joins others in the argument that one benefit of animal identification is it could increase domestic and foreign consumers’ confidence in American-raised meats when incorporated into a food traceability system.

Although food safety legislation Congress is considering only applies to FDA-inspected products, like vegetables and seafood, it could pressure animal agriculture markets to increase transparency. Pressure already exists on the global market.

However, some people who oppose USDA’s National Animal Identification System – the current voluntary program that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is reworking – say animal ID is not about food safety. They fear it could be a vehicle that meat processors could use to blame producers for food contamination.

Congress reduced NAIS’s funding from its $14.6 million request to $5.3 million because of low enrollment, even though many legislators support mandatory identification. It’s an animal health program that could double as a food-safety measure in the future, and that’s something Vilsack may consider in the program’s reformation.