Brucellosis Vaccination No Longer Required as of January 1, 2024
During the 2023 Oregon Legislative Session, the legislature passed Senate Bill 57, which was signed into law by Governor Kotek on June 6, 2023. Senate Bill 57 removed the statutory requirement for brucellosis vaccination in Oregon effective January 1, 2024.
In response to the statutory changes brought by Senate Bill 57, the Oregon Department of Agriculture is undertaking rule making to ensure that our administrative rules match the statutory changes in SB 57. These proposed rules will be available for public comment beginning November 1, 2023.
Because the changes are not effective until January 1, 2024, the Oregon Department of Agriculture must still enforce the current requirements for brucellosis vaccination. Until the changes in SB 57 take effect, female cattle over 4 months of age imported into Oregon must still be vaccinated for brucellosis. Conversely, for cattle born in Oregon during 2023, vaccination will not be required as they will reach 12 months of age (the cutoff for vaccination) after the new laws take effect January 1, 2024.
Changes to Brucellosis Vaccination
While SB 57 removes the requirement for vaccination of female cattle against B. abortus, it does not change the ability or process to vaccinate cattle (or bison). The brucellosis vaccine will now be an optional vaccine at the discretion of cattle owners in consultation with their veterinarian. Likewise, the vaccine will still be required to be administered by a licensed and accredited veterinarian, and will require placing (or reporting of existing) official identification, and an official brucellosis tattoo.
Changes to Official Identification
In addition to SB 57, the USDA is in the process of updating the Animal Disease Traceability rules in 9 CFR Part 86, with the intent of limiting new official identification devices used in cattle to RFID tags. While an exact timeline is not yet know, this change is anticipated to take effect during 2024. When this change takes effect, metal clip tags (bangs and bright tags) will no longer be allowed for use on newly identified cattle.
Because of the changes in SB 57, and the anticipated changes to the federal ADT rules, the Oregon Department of Agriculture will no longer Orange RFID tags available, but instead will supply only white RFID tags for use by veterinarians. These tags can be used for any activities requiring official identification, including brucellosis vaccination. We will continue to provide metal clip “bangs” tags as long as USDA continues to supply these tags.