ACA to ask Member Associations if they want a Federal CWD Rule
January 8, 2014
Council Leaders to Bring Back Feedback to Council Next Week
AYR, NE- The American Cervid Leadership Council convened Tuesday evening with a lengthy and robust schedule. The main topic of discussion was the new Chronic Wasting Disease Program Standards Version 23 and the federal rule itself. Over the past year, industry leaders have focused on making favorable changes to almost two-dozen versions of the program standards, but now industry is beginning to take aim at the federal rule. The federal rule, which has been in place since 2012, has been under extreme criticism by industry. Because of the federal rule accompanied by the program standards, the Flees Farm in Wisconsin and respective trace-out farms have suffered because of increased regulations in the two documents.
Since November, ACA leaders have had dozens of requests from member associations asking what options are available now that the federal rule has added more regulations requiring whole herd quarantines. ACA attorneys provided council leaders several options should the industry decide it does not want the federal rule. Moderator Eric Mohlman said the ACA member associations should go back to their respective associations and discuss these options and then be prepared to discuss their decision at the next ACA council meeting.
Earlier today, the ACA released a comparison chart of the new changes made in Version 23 of the Chronic Wasting Disease Program Standards and their comparison with version 22. It was noted the new version still major issues that have not been removed after one year and twenty-three versions. USDA/APHIS has stated “if there is a federal rule then there will also be accompanying program standards.”
Curt Waldvogel, representative for the Second Ark Foundation, asked all the council members in attendance what benefits exist for industry by having a federal rule. No council member could give any benefits.
The Council continued discussions regarding the need for a live Chronic Wasting Disease blood test. Laurie Seale, of Whitetails of Wisconsin, provided an update and said the test possibilities are being reviewed by very credible sources. “We have to start this process now, the industry needs it,” said Seale. Fundraising initiatives for the test are already underway. A “Live Chronic Wasting Disease Test Committee” was created on a unanimous 24-0 vote by a motion from Gary Olson of the Minnesota Deer Farmers Association.
By order of a motion from Kevin Hinkebein of the Missouri Elk Farmers Association, the ACA leaders adopted the first recommendation of the new Media Review Committee. The committee, chaired by Charly Seale of the Exotic Wildlife Association, recommended sending a letter to the St. Louis Post-Journal for the article labeled “Approach to deer disease stirs debate in Missouri” correcting several inaccurate facts. “We can’t allow these false accounts to go unchecked,” Charly Seale told the council.