INDIANAPOLIS — Many topics, including a proposed identification program, were discussed at the Indiana Board of Animal Health’s quarterly meeting April 10.

The board is proposing rule changes to livestock identification to align with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal Disease Traceability program.

A first reading of the proposed rule change was approved at the board’s quarterly meeting. The proposed change is to ensure Indiana is in compliance with federal standards.

If passed, the board will recognize three forms of identification for cattle and bison, including 840 tags, National Uniform Eartagging System tags and official USDA program tags.

Three forms of identification also will be required for sheep and goats, including scrapie program flock tags, electronic implant, or microchip, for breed-registered animals, or a tattoo and registration.

Official identification for equine includes physical description and permanent forms of identification, including brands, tattoos, digital photographs or an electronic implant.

Identification requirement for livestock entering Indiana will vary by species. Specific information can be found by visiting www.in.gov/boah/2328.htm .

A second reading of the rule will take place at the board’s July 10 meeting. Between now and then, those wanting to express feedback can find a virtual public hearing at www.in.gov/boah/2615.htm.

If adopted, the identification program would go in to effect in early 2015.

The proposed rule is a culmination of a lot of effort, said Bret Marsh, Indiana state veterinarian.

PEDV Research

Research into porcine epidemic diarrhea virus continues with the help of The National Pork Board, which just set aside more than $600,000 for new studies. Research includes finding the duration of the immunity following an infection, risk factors for disease spread and more, according to a press release.

Melissa Justice, veterinarian and director of swine division at the animal health board, told board members that although there was some concern the virus was transmitted by porcine blood plasma feed additives, it has been shown that although the feed is capable of containing PEDV, it is not proven to transmit the disease.

Interstate Shipping

Owners of state-inspected meat and poultry plants will have the opportunity to ship products outside of Indiana with an agreement the state has signed with the USDA through the Cooperative Interstate Shipment agreement program.

Prior to the agreement, state-inspected products could only be sold within the state they were produced, according to a press release. Indiana is the fourth state to enter the program.

Marsh described the program is a “neat opportunity.”

Online Permits

Permits now are available at www.in.gov/boah/2661.htm . Permits may be requested at any time.

Permit numbers will be assigned at the time of the request, and the information is then forwarded to the animal health office, said Marianne Ash, director of the division of animal.

The system was implemented recently and is working well, Ash said.