Cattle industry secures 45-day agreement to reinstate spray boxes
Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA), Texas Cattle Feeders Association (TCFA), Texas Farm Bureau (TFB), Livestock Marketing Association of Texas (LMAT), Independent Cattlemen’s Association of Texas (ICA) and South Texans’ Property Rights Association (STPRA) attended a meeting with Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller Tuesday afternoon in Austin.
The purpose of the meeting was to urge the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) to protect the cattle industry by allowing producers to continue utilizing spray boxes as part of their cattle fever tick eradication efforts. The producers and staff that attended the meeting on behalf of industry were able to reach a temporary compromise with TDA that will ensure our ability to protect the health and well-being of our cattle for the next 45 days.
Commissioner Miller committed that spray boxes would be operational so long as producers can identify and separate ill or weak cattle before being treated in a spray box; and so long as USDA-APHIS employees are present or there is a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in place ensuring that Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) employees are administering the treatment as agents of USDA.
It is our understanding that the various agencies involved have agreed to this temporary compromise as of Thursday morning.
Again, this will only be in effect for the next 45 days while TDA, TAHC, USDA-APHIS and EPA work to reconcile their differing opinions on the label, but will allow cattle producers to continue to protect and care for their livestock and prevent the spread of cattle fever ticks while a permanent solution is implemented.