NAIS Suspended After Zanoni Lawsuit

NAIS--the USDA's plan to identify and document animals--has had its effective date suspended due to questions about privacy.

by Dani Yokhna
The effective date of NAIS has been suspended by the Dept. of Agriculture

If you’re not sure what NAIS is, read more:

What are your thoughts about NAIS?

For those who believe the NAIS plan is extreme, especially for small farmers, and fails to protect the privacy and traditional rights of farmers, there’s good news:

In early June, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia, ordered the Department of Agriculture to suspend the effective date of NAIS, which is its plan to identify and document animals in the U.S. (Read the Federal Register notice on the suspension)

The court action was the result of attorney Mary Zanoni’s lawsuit seeking information under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). She claimed the USDA was collecting records under NAIS without complying with the requirements of the Privacy Act.

Since the District Court ruling–and in chorus with the its finding-a group of 11 individuals, representing various livestock and other associations, sent a letter to members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

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The letter details the reasons–such as improper attention to privacy rights and several states taking protective steps–which they believe make USDA’s procedures related to NAIS improper, if not outright unlawful.


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