Progress! South Dakota Eliminates Brucellosis Testing Requirement

December 18, 2018

The cervid industry's campaign to eliminate brucellosis import testing for all farmed cervids is gaining momentum. Last week, industry leaders received word the South Dakota Animal Industry Board has dropped their brucellosis testing requirement for farmed cervids. South Dakota now joins Colorado and Minnesota as states that do not require the test for importation.

As noted earlier in the year, the North American Elk Breeders Association, American Cervid Alliance and its member associations are working together to eliminate this unnecessary testing requirement for interstate movement.  In 2017, the United States Animal Health Association (USAHA) unanimously adopted a resolution urging state animal health officials to eliminate interstate Brucellosis testing requirements for cervids that originate outside the Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA). The request was thoroughly vetted by animal health officials and ultimately unanimously approved by the USAHA membership at their annual conference.

Since Brucellosis import rules are state requirements and not federal, the changes need to be requested state by state by the local industry leaders. Over the last year, the industry has worked concurrently to make these requests. An overwhelming majority of states that regularly import elk have started the process to eliminate the requirement. Several states are expected to have fully repealed the requirement by the end of 2019.

The cervid industry thanks Dr. Oedekoven and his department for this change. The Alliance will update the industry on more changes as they come.

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