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Recently, foodborne public health crises caused by livestock (e.g. ox, pig, chicken) frequently hit every part of the world, posing serious threat to human health and public safety. In this light, animal health and epidemic prevention have been prioritized by almost all governments, food companies and consumers. Each country has been investing great efforts to establish animal identification and tracking management system to regulate livestock breeding, thus effectively preventing and controlling major livestock epidemic disease and enhancing regulation on livestock health. As a result, this system has become an important measure for guaranteeing livestock quality and safety.
In December of 2006, General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People's Republic of China and Standardization Administration of the People's Republic of China published the Structure of Animal RFID Code (GB/T20563-2006), which regulates the livestock identification and tracking system and came into force on December 1, 2006.
Animal identification and tracking system aims to, in case of epidemic situation or quality & safety issues, track, trace and effectively solve any potential problems in animal breeding and animal products manufacturing, processing, sales by identifying individual animal or group, registering relevant breeding, slaughtering and processing sites, as well as recording relevant information of animal product processing, storing, transportation and sales.
Livestock tracking management system includes three levels, i.e. management center, testing center, inspection and quarantine station. The System is mainly composed of electronic ear tag, fixed reader-writer, hand-held reader-writer, reader, and PC terminal and server.
1. Inspection and Quarantine Station
An inspection and quarantine station is established in each livestock farm, and different system database server can be built based on the scale of the farm, so as to achieve functions like the distribution of electronic animal tag, inputting of animal data and inspection & quarantine data, and reporting of diseases. Database server of the inspection and quarantine station is connected to the database server of the testing center, and the real-time information uploading is enabled.
2. Testing Center
Testing center is responsible for receiving data and information of all kinds (e.g. animal birth, feeding, disease, and growth) transmitted from inspection and quarantine stations, which will then be classified, sorted and analyzed. Available functions include farm ID distribution, electronic animal tag distribution, data storing, displaying, recording, printing and statistics, as well as connection to the local health bureau and management center.
The testing center saves information of all animals from its subordinate inspection and quarantine stations, which will provide real-time data transmission to the testing center, and then the testing center will transmit analyzed data to the management center regularly.
3. Management Center
Management Center is consisted of relevant units of Health Department and serves as the decision-making center of the tracking system, and is responsible for analyzing and researching on the testing information obtained from the testing center and making decision timely, thus guaranteeing early spotting, predicting and treatment of any animal epidemic situation, and enhancing the management of animal through birth to slaughter.
1. Highly informationized: The use of RFID enables innovation of information collection, transmission and processing, and quick knowledge of animal growth, disease and quarantine by the inspection and quarantine staff.
2. Efficient tracking: In this system, animals are tracked throughout the whole life cycle and details are recorded in each step. In addition, data is uploaded to the testing center and management center real-time. In case of any epidemic situation, the system will automatically trace the source and thus achieve rapid response to the situation.
3. Convenience: Centralized all-electronic data management of the system enables to transfer the task of data searching to the server, thus saving lots of human power and time and improving response speed.
4. Management enhancement: centralized management and distributed control; regulated monitoring and management of epidemic situation, and unnecessary steps are reduced, enabling timely handling of emergence.
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