Since 1978, the French animal ID and traceability system has made great strides by integrating technological innovations and re-adapting to the changing needs of the cattle sector. Many features built from this long-standing experience have served to template a series of EU regulations (EC 1760/2000, EC 1825/2000) as well as various national EU member State schemes.
This is all done through the Chamber of Agriculture which is based in Moulins as our cows reside in the Allier in France. The people working there are very helpful and very kindly, help us through the whole process. We where also very lucky to have someone to show us where to place the tag in the ear so it was in the correct place, but even so Willows ears are so small compared to a normal calf it takes up all of her ear.
Farmers have up to 21 days (or sale) from the calf’s birth to uniquely identify each new calf by fitting approved tags in each ear. Each tag carries the animals own unique ID number, composed of the country code (“FR” for France) and a 10-digit code number.
Double tagging the animals is simply an additional security mechanism in place so that if an animal loses one of its ear tags, it is still identified by the second one. Any lost ear tag will need to be replaced with a new tag reprinted with the same ID number. Since 2010, breeders can opt to upgrade one of these two sight tags to an electronic ID ear tag fitted with a transponder.