The Wisconsin Livestock Identification Consortium (WLIC) is a statewide initiative that has grown out of a nationally identified need to develop a livestock identification and information system. It is a proactive, livestock industry driven effort that includes producers, cooperatives, private business, and government entities.
Vision Statement: The Wisconsin Livestock Identification Consortium (WLIC) will implement an animal identification and information system inWisconsin following nationally established standards. This will support the protection of animal health, and the economic infrastructure fueled by animal agriculture. WLIC will achieve this by fostering cooperation and understanding among specie organizations, industry, consumers, government agencies, and educational partners.
Why a Wisconsin Initiative?
There is a vast diversification of animal agriculture and management practices across the United States. While a nationwide structure is needed, key Wisconsin leaders recognized that a regional focus around common issues should be pursued.
The participation of various industry organizations, including those representing various species, provides for a broad cross-section of support and direction from the animal agriculture industry.
How is WLIC funded?
WLIC was incorporated in early 2002 as a nonprofit 501c3 organization making it eligible for state and federal funding. Initial funding was obtained from an Agricultural Diversification Development grant from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. Congress appropriated $750,000 in year one and $1 million in years two and three to the USDA/APHIS/Veterinary Service to establish a cooperative agreement with WLIC. Since fall of 2005 WLIC has been the processing agent for premises registration thru a contract with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection.
How is WLIC organized?
WLIC is made up of member organizations or individuals from the animal agriculture industry that supports the advancement of a national identification program. The members elect a board of directors and actively participate in the Consortium through quarterly and annual meetings, various committees, and “hands-on” pilot projects. The board establishes objectives and governing policies. WLIC’s immediate stakeholders include:
- Industry Organizations
- Packing Plants
- Livestock Marketers
- Livestock Transportation
- Animal Health Officials
Initiating a Program via Premises Identification
The standards and requirements of the US Animal Identification Plan (USAIP), established in 2003 were used to direct the development of the Wisconsin ID system.
Phase I, the foundation of the program, is premises identification. It is necessary to know the sites where animals are produced, transferred through, and intermingled with other animals if effective trace back is to be accomplished.
Phase II will be individual animal identification in which the US Animal Identification Number (USAIN) will be “tied” or linked to the premises through an information system. The need to associate the animal number to the premises is the critical component that provides the information to record animal movements. The phase-in approach will result in a 48-hour trace back system and will take several years to implement.
During Phases I and II, WLIC will work with industry groups to support the integration of quality assurance programs and other initiatives to enhance product marketability and/or branded product labeling.