Testifying before the House Subcommittee on Agriculture in Washington, D.C. last week on several issues regarding livestock and foreign agriculture important to the U.S. cattle industry, was Craig Uden, Nebraska feedlot and cattle producer and president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.
He revealed in an interview after giving his testimony that one of the major issues discussed in the meeting was the imperative nature of Congress’ investment in the protection of the livestock industry from pathogenic outbreaks like Foot & Mouth disease.
“We believe that a strong animal health program, including a vaccine bank, is vitally funded,” Uden said. “We’re asking $150 million for five years to develop a vaccine – not in this country – but to have the vaccine ready to go in case we ever did have that type of an outbreak.”
Uden informs that type of work involving a highly infectious pathogen like Foot & Mouth disease, is too risky to conduct on our soils domestically, but insists the industry and the country should be prepared for a worst-case scenario to ensure the security of the US food chain.
“It’s a very complex issue,” he said. “We want to get that visiting started on that so that we could move forward.”
Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays and Craig Uden discuss his meeting in Washington this week with the House Ag Committee