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June 8, 2018

Agritechnology and Beef Cattle: RFID Update

Technology has always helped agriculture to improve and succeed; RFID and cattle are a case in point.

The need to track cattle has been a requirement for beef cattle ranchers and dairy farmers alike for as long as there has been livestock to count, and new technology is making it easier than ever. Agritechnology concerning RFID and cattle is advancing in leaps and bounds, meaning an RFID—Radio-frequency identification—can do such more than simply identify the cattle in your herd. Explore the latest updates in livestock management using RFID tech for cattle below.

Advancements in RFID and Cattle

It used to be that cattle had ear tags or branding to identify the individual animals in a herd, according to a Purdue University publication. Then RFID devices came along, advancing the technology of livestock management by borrowing from cell phones, computers, and online data. Animals can be scanned and the RFID will share data about the animal, such as age, breed, and production history. This tracking data is useful for seeing patterns in the herd, tracking livestock disease, and more. Some RFID devices even help perform tasks around the farm, such as dispensing feed to certain animals or recording which milking stall was chosen by a particular cow.

The latest leap in RFID and cattle technology has arrived in the form of an implantable RFID—a subcutaneous health tracker. Likened to Fitbits for cattle, one company in Australia has created a line of RFID’s that don’t just keep physical track of an animal, they can track any number of different metrics that a rancher or dairy farmer would benefit from knowing: the animal’s temperature, the last time it ate, where the animal has moved during the day, if it’s close to giving birth, if the animal is upset, and more.

Agritechnology Helps Farmers & Ranchers

EmbediVet, manufactured by Livestock Labs, is being tested at Utah State University’s School of Veterinary Medicine, comparing the accuracy of embedded RFID devices to wearable RFID devices. From a health standpoint, RFIDs that track such important data will allow both operators and veterinarians to see health problems and animal discomfort sooner, meaning they can be addressed in a more timely and affordable manner.

At AgAmerica, we know that technology helps support the nation’s farmers and ranchers, helping the ag industry to grow and raise more with less. You can also get more with less with our custom loan packages. Contact one of our expert team members today to learn how our spectrum of financing options can support your ag operation.

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