e-Identification and Registration of farmed animals in The Nether

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Since December 2006, it has been mandatory for cattle farmers in the Netherlands to use the National Service for the Implementation of Regulations electronic identification and registration system for cattle. This system avoids the huge amounts of paperwork involved in reports, requests for amendment and surveys. Cattle farmers can report electronically in three different ways (web services, online, voice response), seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Also, they can survey their company records at any time using the new central ICT system. The system is indispensable for the effective control of animal disease and to guarantee food safety. I&R is of great importance for the export sector, because it allows for faster trading, slaughtering and transport of animals. In the event of an animal crisis, for example on a European or worldwide scale, we can trace extremely fast from which source the contaminated animals originate. It is also possible to quickly map the areas with zoning, literally, using a GIS application, allowing for the maximum limitation of economic damage and victims and spread of the disease. Linking at a Pan European level will lead to a more prepared faster and adequate response. This is also important because of the enormous economic interests involved in the trade of animals/meat in Europe and worldwide. It is one of the most innovative systems in its field in the world. The system has been built from scratch and is based on a completely new infrastructure and software architecture (inclusive with an administrative organisation and ISO-certified manual). The system only has electronic reporting channels allowing for the input of reports via the internet, voice response and web services (connecting of company management packages). The principle of web services in this perspective connects to the developments in the market for chain integration. The system is very reliable and secure as, in a worst case scenario, in case of failure the export and slaughter sector in the system comes to a halt. In order to be able to guarantee the reliability and availability of data and infrastructure, transactions are stored in two different locations and processing is executed applying a double or redundant configuration on two physically separated locations. The entire life of an animal is registered in one location on the basis of 1 unique ear tags concerning holding, birth, sex, mother, hair colour, departures, arrivals, death, slaughter, export, import and immunization.