Thursday, November 13, 2008

RFID Beast Mark Squashed

Pressure is being exerted to squash the "mark of the beast" RFID federal lawsuit. ...

... "The Amish farmers claim Michigan regulations requiring them to use radio frequency identification devices on their cattle constitutes some form of a mark of the beast ... " ...

Via Wired: RFID Lawsuit

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Saturday, March 01, 2008

Cattle RFID Making a Difference

Digital Angel is positioned well in the Canadian market for animal identification using its RFID technology. The mandatory program in Canada is showing benefits in identifying and locating infected animals. ...

Canada animal identification uses RFID technology successfully

... "The Company's products play a key role in identifying diseased cattle before they enter the food supply and tracing other animals that may have been exposed. In January 2005, the Canadian government instituted a mandatory RFID cattle identification program following previous confirmed cases of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Canada. Earlier this week, a six-year-old dairy cow infected with BSE was discovered in Alberta. " ...


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Monday, November 26, 2007

RFID Cattle Tracking System Uses Battery Assist Passive Technology

Intelleflex demonstrates its RFID solution on live cattle using a battery-assisted RFID configuration at the Calgary Stockyards. The real-world demonstration works in a high-speed, fast-paced environment of the stock yard. Cattle tracking is a challenge and this solution is viewed as an improvement to operational efficienct. ...

Intelleflex implements cattle tracking solution that uses passive RFID technology with battery assist

... "Using Intelleflex's battery-assisted passive RFID platform, livestock can be identified and tracked over long distances and with multiple reads per second across multiple heads of cattle. Intelleflex's demonstration at the Calgary Stockyards shows how multiple cattle are able to move through the auction process at the speed of commerce, tracking 100% of the cattle consistently. In addition, with Intelleflex's extended on-tag memory, an entire history, including ownership, inoculation history and location, can be permanently and securely stored with the tag." ...

Via Intelleflex: RFID Cattle Tracking Solution

The Calgary Stockyards

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

RFID Ink Tattoo

Somark is a technology company located at the Center for Emerging Technologies and is
developing a proprietary ID system based on a biocompatible ink with chipless RFID functionality. The company has successfully tested RFID ink in animals, which proves that ink can be delivered and read. The primary application of the RFID ink is animal tracking in the livestock industry. ...

... "Somark announces the successful testing of Biocompatible Chipless RFID Ink in cattle and laboratory rats. The test proved the efficacy of injecting and reading a Biocompatible Chipless RFID Ink tattoo within the skin of animals. The technology will be initially leveraged to the livestock industry to help identify / track cattle and thus mitigate export trade loss from BSE (a.k.a. Mad Cow Disease) scares. Secondary target markets include laboratory animals, dogs & cats, prime cuts of meat, and military personnel. The company, which is currently raising a Series A equity financing, will license the technology to secondary target markets." ...

Via Somark Innovations: Somark Innovations Announces Successful Live Animal Tests of Biocompatible Chipless RFID Ink in Cattle and Laboratory Rats

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Thursday, December 21, 2006

RFID Animal Identification and Management

RFID technology supports the management of animals, such as cattle, and enables efficient and effective tracking of samples. ...

... "The animals also had management tags that were paired up with the RFID tag so each animal had two forms of identification. After the tag was read, the animal was given the tuberculin test to be read three days later. " ...

Via The Prairie Star: Animal Identification Using RFID Technology

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Sunday, September 10, 2006

RFID Security: NSF Funds Smart Tag Research ...

National Science Foundation, NSF, provides funding to increase the privacy and security of RFID smart tags, through better cryptographics.

... "Strengthened security for smart tags - the wireless devices that allow drivers to zip through automatic tollbooths or pass a security desk with the flash of a card - is the aim of a new initiative that has received $1.1 million from the National Science Foundation. Led by Kevin Fu of the University of Massachusetts Amherst, the researchers are developing much-needed cryptographic protocols, hardware and applications for the increasingly common devices. Millions of consumers already use smart tags—wireless devices that use radio waves to identify and authenticate people and things - and they will become more numerous, says Fu.

Kevin Fu of the University of Massachusetts Amherst investigates RFID smart tag security with NSF funding ...

Smart tags - which include Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) tags—are already used to track items from library books to merchandise to cattle. Increasingly, they are replacing the magnetic stripe cards used in security badges and mass transit cards, sometimes also serving as electronic cash. The tags will soon be incorporated into documents such as passports; their use is being explored for tracking medical records and prison inmates. But the tags, which also include contactless smart cards and low-resource sensors, are a technology that has crept in from the edge of the Internet and they present new challenges in terms of security and privacy issues, says Fu.

The unique environment presented by smart tags - they can operate without human intervention and without a physically connected power source - presents unique security concerns, says Fu. Smart tags automatically respond to the device that reads them, so human users don't have the traditional means of giving or denying consent to the reader. This infrastructure of untrusted readers and tags requires an approach that preserves privacy while maintaining the flexibility and convenience that the tags offer.

The new consortium, dubbed the RFID ConsortiUm for Security and Privacy (RFID-CUSP), takes these operating conditions into account and is designing new cryptographic definitions, algorithms and models that will lay the solid foundation on which secure applications can be built. As part of their project, the researchers are working with the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART). The project will result in the first completely open, publicly available software for experimenting with RFID security and privacy. " ...

San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District collaborates to address RFID security ...

UMass Amherst: UMass Amherst-Led Research Will Protect Consumers by Ramping Up Security for Smart Tags

Kevin Fu: "Open cryptanalysis of existing RFID protocols will give assurance in the soundness of reliable RFID technology. At UMass, we are investigating how to build secure RFID-based systems. "

The Sensor Revolution: Industry & Commerce: "Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) stands among the fastest-proliferating sensor technologies. RFID systems combine electromagnetic sensing with radio communications. RFID tags and interrogators can be used to track inventory in a warehouse or collect tolls from moving cars. "

Understanding Contactless Smart Card Technologies and Some of the Leading Reader/Card Product Providers (PDF): "That transmission could then be replayed to a reader to gain access illicitly at some time in the future. In contrast, today’s secure contactless cards and readers (such as XceedID ISO-X and HID iCLASS) employ a myriad of cryptographic techniques. These techniques encrypt data in ways that render it useless to an illicit user. Thus, traditional proximity cards and readers provide inferior communication security when compared to secure contactless smart cards and readers. "

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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Tamper-Proof RFID Tag ...

Certification leverages tamper-proof RFID tag for animals. ...

... "Cattle must be tagged in the left ear with an ISO approved, tamperproof RFID tag by the producer in the first physical possession of the animal prior to any movement from their birthplace premises and absolutely no later than at weaning time. " ...

Tamper-Proof RFID Tag: Via Hot Springs Star: Beef certification program featured at Ag Seminar ...

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Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Wireless RFID Animal Tracking and Traceback System ...

ScoringAg leverages RFID to enable web-based animal tracking system and could replace NAIS cattle ID project. ...

... "Instead of waiting for hours or days for animal health history - which is the stated goal of the proposed NAIS animal ID consortium - all field data updates, including those that are available on the animal's public page, are displayed instantly - in real time - as they occur, when and where the data is collected and uploaded - in the field or in chutes at auctions, feedlots, packing plants, and elsewhere. Only ScoringAg's system is ready and able to deliver this level of secure information in just seconds to those in need during a catastrophic event. The animal's public records page can also show other tags, brands or tattoos, or a photo of the animal if needed. This gives an additional means of animal ID when RFID ear tags are lost or stolen and only the animal's unique identifying characteristics can give positive ID. ScoringAg's Web-based databank uses its secure Internet interconnections and servers to provide real-time traceup and traceback, as well as complete traceability and animal movement history, to geographically diverse livestock groups - from original producers through all production stages, using a system of checkpoints to account for tagged livestock as they move through the system. " ...

Wireless RFID Animal Tracking and Traceback System; Via ScoringAg: NAIS Cattle ID Pilot Projects Not Needed, Since Proven Advanced Technology Already Exists: While NAIS regional pilot projects merely promised some limited animal ID and tracking results after a few years of study, ScoringAg's Web-based traceup / traceback database system delivers real time results in seconds – in operation now for all livestock species, using high-speed, wireless RFID and precise premises locations ...

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Friday, December 09, 2005

RFID Cost Analysis ...

Cost analysis for an animal RFID application. ...

... "In one example, a 62-animal herd equipped with RFID and all the herd recordkeeping equipment could cost $24.10 per animal per year, while a 1,250-animal herd would have a $3.43 per animal per year cost. In the latter example, the ear tag itself is the most expensive part because all cattle share expense of the recordkeeping equipment. " ...

RFID Cost Analysis : Via Capital Press: Ranchers sort through choices of ID programs

"Animal RFID Electronic Identification": "Study the implementation constraints of the electronic identification system from the technical and organizational levels. Cost-benefit analysis of an electronic identification system. "

Farnam Livestock Tracking Systems: "Fixed costs are those associated with the various components (e.g., hardware, software, management, etc.) that are constant, regardless of the number of animals. These costs will vary tremendously across operations due to variability in herd size. Economies of size exist with regard to the fixed cost components of an RFID system such that the per-unit costs will be lower for larger operations."

Automatic Identification: When to Use RFID | Fall 2004 Perspectives | ICF Consulting: "RFID, which allows passive data collection technology, would have minimal impact on operations. While the cost for RFID tags and infrastructure are higher than barcode, its impact is less severe since only nine million containers and pallets are in circulation, and tags will be reused many times before replacement."

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Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Implantable RFID Temperature Sensor: Bird Flu Application ...

Digital Angel applies implantable temperature-sensor RFID chips to the poultry market for bird flu monitoring application. ...

Implantable RFID Temperature Sensor: Bird Flu Application: Via Digital Angel: DIGITAL ANGEL CORPORATION TO INTRODUCE ITS PROPRIETARY BIO-THERMO™ (TEMPERATURE-SENSING) IMPLANTABLE RFID MICROCHIP AND IDENTITY SYSTEM: Early Detection of Increased Temperature May Prove Pivotal to Identification and Control of Avian Flu Outbreaks ...

... "Digital Angel Corporation (Amex: DOC), an advanced technology company in the field of rapid and accurate identification, location tracking, and condition monitoring of high-value assets, announced that it will introduce its patented Bio-Thermo (temperature-sensing) implantable RFID microchip and related identity system to international poultry/bird markets with the initial geographic emphasis in Asia. The comprehensive identity system includes the implantable Bio-Thermo microchip and related identity and temperature-sensing scanners that allow early identification of temperature increases in individual birds which may permit rapid identification and control of an outbreak of bird flu or other avian diseases. Until now the Company has focused its implantable RFID temperature sensing system on the companion pet and equine marketplace. The system is in testing phases for other livestock such as cattle and swine. " ...

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Thursday, October 20, 2005

RFID Retinal Scans Animal ID Evaluation

RFID Retinal Scans Animal ID Evaluation: Via Innovations Report: Retinal scans eyed for New Mexico show cattle

... "In a first-of-its kind project for New Mexico, scientists tested 35 market steers from 18 Quay County farm families, using a combination of eye-scanning and radio frequency identification (RFID) ear tags for animal ID evaluation. Most of the cattle were high-value 4-H and FFA show cattle that spent much of the past season moving between regional livestock fairs. " ...

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Saturday, July 30, 2005

Texas RFID Animal Identification Trials

Texas RFID Animal Identification Trials: Texas Animal Health Commission: Real Life Trials for Animal Identification Underway: Livestock Owners: Get Your Premises Number Now ...

State of Texas trials RFID technology for animal identification through this year ...

... "Through the rest of the year, livestock identification in Texas is moving from the drawing board to field conditions to test identification devices, equipment durability and reliability. Using USDA cooperative agreement funding, the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) has awarded contracts to four manufacturers of radio frequency ear tags (RFID), five makers of tag reader devices, four computer software providers and a data trustee to maintain the computer records. Tag readers and computers are set up in several livestock markets, and customers of these facilities will be issued RFID ear tags for cattle that will be marketed through the livestock markets. " ...

Registering for a premises identification number is easy, and the application is simple to complete. Producers can call for an application, or they can go on the internet to register. To obtain a paper copy or schedule a presentation, call the TAHC at 1-800-550-8242.

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Monday, July 04, 2005

NLIS RFID National Livestock Identification System ...

NLIS RFID National Livestock Identification System: National Livestock Identification System - questions and answers: From 1 January 2006, it will be mandatory for the national NLIS database to be notified within 7 days after cattle are brought on to a property ...

... "This can be done by visually reading and reporting the NLIS number printed on each ear device, or by keeping a list of NLIS or microchip (RFID) numbers for each mob of cattle. Purchasing a reader may make this easier, and will provide other benefits for your herd record keeping and management. " ...

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Friday, June 10, 2005

Cattle RFID Track Trace: Canada Program ...


... "The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Andy Mitchell today announced $1.8 million in Government of Canada funding towards the Canadian Radio Frequency Identification (CRFID) Reader Program. The Canadian Radio Frequency Identification (CRFID) Reader Program will improve the tracking and tracing of cattle beyond the farm gate using radio frequency identification (RFID) reader technology. " ...

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) has allocated $1.8 million to facilitate the upload of information to the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) and Agri-Traceabilité Québec (ATQ) through the purchase of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) readers. The Canadian Radio Frequency Identification (CRFID) Reader Program will provide assistance up to 50 percent of the purchase price within pre-determined caps, for approved radio frequency identification (RFID) reader(s), to eligible applicants in the cattle industry. The CRFID will improve the tracking and tracing of cattle beyond the farm gate using RFID reader technology. The objective of the program is to ensure that the cattle industry has the necessary equipment to fully participate in the cattle tracking and tracing system initiative.

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Saturday, April 23, 2005

RFID Animal Identification ...

Transcript of Technical Briefing and Webcast on BSE with Government Officials

... "We have species-specific groups that will be making recommendations on appropriate means of identification of animals based on the species and marketing patterns of those animals. So, for example, with cattle for the most part and animals moved individually, and as we are looking at appropriate means for individual animal ID, largely based on radio frequency ID (RFID) chip. For other species of animals, such as poultry and swine that largely move in groups or lots, there could be potentially a lot ID as opposed to individual animal ID. Conceptually, ID would be put on the animals at the time that they leave the premises of birth, and would follow those animals through slaughter, with a means of tracking them electronically as they go through concentration points such as feed lots, livestock markets, and of course to slaughter. " ...

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Wednesday, March 09, 2005

RFID 48Hour Trace Back For Animal Tracking ...

Idaho State Legislature - 2004 House Agricultural Affairs Committee Minutes

... "The process is called RFID. It will be a mandatory national program. It will register all premises where food animals are held or kept by having a tag number on the animal's ear. These tags would be in specific animals groups, ex. sheep will be with other sheep, cattle to other cattle, etc. USDA will maintain national premises information. The goal is to have a 48-hour trace back capability for disease control purposes. Idaho is at an extreme advantage because we have branding and grazing associations. There is a good chance this will be funded federally. Because of Idaho's advantage, we could start registering July of this year. " ...

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Sunday, March 06, 2005

RFID Reader Questions for Animal Identification ...


... "Radio frequency technology is one form of electronic identification that has been discussed for use with cattle. Animal owners that use RFID for official identification will not necessarily need to have an RFID reader. For example, a producer may be able to record the RFID code of the electronic device before it is applied to an animal and cross-reference the code with a visual-tag number. This would allow the producer to maintain a record of the RFID code without having to read (scan) the transponder. Industry providers may sell RFID eartag attachments on which the RFID code is printed for visual readability. While reading and recording the RFID code manually is not ideal, it can be achieved. " ...

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Sunday, February 20, 2005

Animal RFID ...

Questions and Answers on the National Animal Identification System ...

... "Will Animal Owners Need to Have a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Reader?

A. USDA is maintaining a technology neutral position with regard to the technologies that will be used to identify animals. USDA is developing the standards for collecting and reporting information, but industry will determine which type of identification method or methods work best for each species. Radio frequency technology is one form of electronic identification that has been discussed for use with cattle. Animal owners that use RFID for official identification will not necessarily need to have an RFID reader. For example, a producer may be able to record the RFID code of the electronic device before it is applied to an animal and cross reference the code with a visual tag number. This would allow the producer to maintain a record of the RFID code without having to read (scan) the transponder. Industry providers may sell RFID eartag attachments on which the RFID code is printed for visual readability. While reading and recording the RFID code manually is not ideal, it can be achieved. " ...

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Friday, January 07, 2005

Animal RFID Field Testing Is Ready ...

Premises identification numbers now available

From Texas Farm Bureau ...

... "animal identification is ready for field-testing. This involves the unique identification of each head of livestock moved from its original herd. For cattle, sheep, goats, cervidae (deer) and some other species of livestock, the identification device will be an electronic ear tag, also called a radio frequency (RFID) identification device. For other species, such as swine and poultry, the number can be applied to groups of animals, if they spend their entire production life together as a group or unit. " ...

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Sunday, November 28, 2004

Cost-Effective RFID Animal Identification ...

From Hearings of the Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee - U.S. Senate ...

... "issue relates to species-specific implementation plans. There are vast differences between species including the diseases of concern, production practices, record keeping, animal movements, and animal value. For example, the cattle industry has embraced electronic ID eartags (RFID tags) as the identification device of choice for their species. The value of a single bovine coupled with the frequent commingling of animals from different owners make RFID a logical choice for their species. However, a $2.00 RFID tag is much less of an issue in an animal valued at $1200 versus a $90 animal. From another perspective, if cost of identification is based on breeding females, a cow has one calf per year and therefore the cost per cow is $2.00 per year. On the other hand, a sow will have 22-24 offspring per year and pork producers would have $44-$48 per breeding female per year in identification expenses. Group/lot ID is an effective identification system for swine due to production practices but not commonly applicable to bovine. In addition, many species don�t tolerate eartags (equine, llamas, etc.) It is important that all species are allowed to develop an effective yet affordable ID system. " ...

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Friday, November 26, 2004

RFID Technology in the National Animal Identification System ...

From APHIS | News ...

... "Q. Will Animal Owners Need to Have a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Reader? A. USDA is maintaining a technology neutral position with regard to the technologies that will be used to identify animals. USDA is developing the standards for collecting and reporting information, but industry will determine which type of identification method or methods work best for each species. Radio frequency technology is one form of electronic identification that has been discussed for use with cattle. Animal owners that use RFID for official identification will not necessarily need to have an RFID reader. For example, a producer may be able to record the RFID code of the electronic device before it is applied to an animal and cross reference the code with a visual tag number. This would allow the producer to maintain a record of the RFID code without having to read (scan) the transponder. Industry providers may sell RFID eartag attachments on which the RFID code is printed for visual readability. While reading and recording the RFID code manually is not ideal, it can be achieved. " ...

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Friday, August 13, 2004

Animal RFID: Canadian cattle industry chooses Allflex in move to RFID

From ... Allflex has been selected by the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) to supply Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags for official cattle ...

For nearly four decades, Allflex has been leading the industry with livestock management systems that incorporate the latest design technologies, materials and manufacturing processes. Utilizing the Allflex developed state of the art electronic order processing technology, combined with our accreditation to the International Standards ISO 9001 classification on production procedures, Allflex can proudly lay claim to the Global Leadership in Livestock Identification.

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Saturday, June 26, 2004

Animal RFID: Nat ’ l Feeder Cattle Weekly Summary

From AgWeb ... Stockyards held the first large-scale commercial feeder cattle auction where the entire offering was carrying Radio Frequency Identification Ear-tags (RFID). ...

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Friday, May 28, 2004

RFID Animal Tracking Technology and the USDA

Current methods of livestock identification include but are not limited to ear tags, back tags, neck chains, tail tags, freeze brands, tattoos, paint marks, and leg bands. Electronic identification methods including bar codes and/or radio frequency identification (RFID) transponders are becoming increasingly useful tools in herd management programs. As these new technologies develop and become compatible with one another, they may prove to be cost-effective tools to increase the efficiency of production. Similarly, regulatory agencies may benefit from these systems through increased accuracy and efficiency of tracing the movement of livestock.

The current primary driving forces behind the development of livestock identification systems are based on recognized industry needs. They include disease control and eradication, disease surveillance and monitoring, emergency response to foreign animal diseases, regionalization, global trade, livestock production efficiency, consumer concerns over food safety, and emergency management programs.

Animal tracking and Identification Equipment: Anilog2050 Electronic ISO Tag Reader: The Anilog 2050 is a hand held data logger which allows the power of the office PC to be taken into the stockyard. Its ideal use is as a daily diary of events. The Anilog 2050 is compatible with companion software, Anidata, which holds the details of a herd or herds of animals.

Anilog Portal RFID Antenna: The Oxley Anilog Portal Antenna attaches to the SENTRY series of RFID Tag Readers for applications where electronic tag reader systems are permanently installed and integrated into control and monitoring systems. The Anilog Portal Antenna has been designed specifically for walk-through use with cattle and the Allflex range of Electronic Ear Tags. The portal construction houses a wire loop antenna which emits an RF field to detect any TIRIS tag within typically 1m range.

AniData SIS Experts: The Anidata SIS Experts integrate Anidata 3.5 with the British Cattle Movement Service’s Cattle Tracing System and allow you to easily and speedily convey cattle movement infor-mation to BCMS. The system makes it possible to eliminate the laborious handwritten forms and processes you have been used to - ensuring efficient and accurate recording of cattle movements using electronic tags and hand-held tag readers which can upload the stored information into your computer.

Texas Instruments RFID tags are being used to identify millions of livestock animals around the world. These systems track meat and dairy animals, valuable breeding stock and laboratory animals involved in lengthy and expensive research projects. With the chips in an electronic ear tag or inserted into the rectum of ruminant animals, farm management and data collection can be fully automated for such processes as feeding, weighing, disease control, subsidies, and breeding practices as well as quality and tracebility assurance.

Radio Frequency ID of Animals, Code Structure (ISO Standard 11784)—Specifies the RFID code for use with animals. Contains the structure of the radio-frequency identification code for animals. Does not specify the characteristics of the transmission protocols between transponder and transceiver. Replaces the first edition.

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Monday, May 24, 2004

RFID Animal Tracking Program: United States Animal Identification Plan ...

From South Dakota Department of Agriculture ... Given the geographic size of the United States, its cattle population and number of operations, radio-frequency identification (RFID) has been cited as the most efficient means of collecting data for a national identification program. RFID eliminates the potential mistakes of transferring data by hand. It's also the most cost-effective way to associate data. Many things will need to be done if this becomes the standard. Market facilities and processing plants will need to incorporate scanners and readers to handle the collection of data and movement of animals, databases will need to be developed, the various data software companies will need to be compatible, exchange and sharing of information will have to be addressed, who has access to the information is a concern, funding is a concern, etc. A voluntary, non-electronic version of animal tracking may need to be implemented as a phase in to RFID technology ...

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Monday, April 26, 2004

TransCore Launches AutoExpreso Electronic Toll Collection System ...

From Business Wire (press release) ... $30 million for the installation, operation and maintenance of the system and will use TransCore's eGo(TM) radio frequency identification (RFID) technology for ...

TransCore’s Amtech technology was founded by five scientists from the renowned Los Alamos National Laboratory where they developed RFID technology for two divisions of the federal government: the Department of Energy application to track vehicles and nuclear materials and the Department of Agriculture application to track cattle and monitor their health. Today, TransCore’s Chief Scientist Dr. Jerry Landt, who holds more than 13 of the key RFID patents and was a member of the original scientific team, leads research and development efforts at TransCore’s Amtech Technology Center in Albuquerque, N.M.

TransCore unveils its innovative eGo™ product family. Through a series of groundbreaking design innovations, this wireless radio frequency identification (RFID) technology overcomes adoption and cost barriers for large-scale opportunities, opens new markets for ITS applications, and promotes broader acceptance of ITS systems.

The eGo wireless communications tag is a paper-thin, sticker-like tag with technology that allows user-defined information to be read from or communicated to the tag. It requires no battery and sets a new price/performance level for RFID tags. This new technology is in stark contrast to the larger, read-only or battery-required read/write, higher-priced tags predominantly used today in electronic toll collection, access control or parking applications.

About eGo Products: The windshield sticker tag operates in the 915 MHz radio frequency band, and is an RF-programmable device that does not require a battery or connection to the vehicle's electrical system. It is in the form of a flexible, tamper-resistant sticker (45 x 85 x 1 mm) much like a vehicle registration sticker. The tag has a read range of 5 meters or 16.4 feet and reads at highway speeds of up to 100 mph or 160 km/h. The windshield sticker tag has a 1024 bit memory capable of reading, writing and rewriting information, or permanently locking individual bytes. The tag is designed to withstand extreme temperatures, sunlight, humidity and vibration.

The 2110 reader is a fully integrated, self-contained 915 MHz wireless identification reader. The 39.4 x 39.4 cm reader includes an RF module, digital signal processor (DSP), power supply, antenna, I/O ports, and serial communications interface. The reader can be configured to read tags with 64-bit tag ID or 1024 bits of tag memory, and can also read ATA (American Trucking Associations)-compliant and ISO (International Standards Organization)-compliant tags. The reader is designed to withstand extreme temperatures, humidity and vibration.

About TransCore: TransCore is a privately held transportation services company with 1,800 employees and more than 80 locations globally. With installations in 39 countries, 80-plus patents and a world-class manufacturing facility, TransCore's expertise in providing system-based applications that improve transportation efficiency is unparalleled. For more information, visit

Transcore's Amtech product line is comprised of dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) systems based on radio frequency (RF) technology. This ground-breaking wireless data technology, one of the many firsts you’ll find at TransCore, allows communications between readers and electronic tag devices attached to vehicles, equipment and containers.

Companies around the world utilize Transcore technology to identify, track and monitor almost anything that moves. From electronic toll and traffic management to commercial and private fleets, parking and access control applications to rail and intermodal yards.

The wireless systems are rugged and reliable, built to withstand heavy industrial, marine, rail and traffic environments. The systems can operate at international-standard 915 MHz and 2450 MHz bands and 5.8 GHz capability will soon be available. They are in operation around the world in Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, North America and South America. Each Amtech system is manufactured at TransCore’s ISO 9001 quality-certified Amtech Technology Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico which houses research and development, engineering and manufacturing departments.

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Thursday, April 15, 2004

RFID Lab: ACNielsen Opens RFID Learning Lab

Business Wire (press release) ... ACNielsen US, an operating unit of ACNielsen, a VNU business, today announced that it has opened a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology learning ...

BOCA RATON, FL — 15 April 2004 — ACNielsen U.S., an operating unit of ACNielsen, a VNU business, today announced that it has opened a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology learning lab at its Schaumburg, Illinois, office.

The announcement was made here during the annual Consumer 360 Conference hosted by ACNielsen, Spectra, and other business units of VNU Marketing Information. Conference attendees can visit ACNielsen's on-site RFID Learning Center to see a live demonstration of how the technology works.

With RFID technology, retailers and manufacturers hope to gain new efficiencies in managing their products throughout the supply chain using microchips on RFID tags that are attached to pallets, cases and potentially specific products. Many believe the technology will eventually replace bar codes.

According to Ted Fichuk, senior vice president, Retail Measurement Services, ACNielsen Global Marketing, "RFID technology has the potential to bring many positive changes to our industry. We're taking a proactive stance, making sure we'll be ready to process information generated by the technology should it gain widespread acceptance. We also want to serve as a source of information about the technology for our clients."

According to Scott Medford, vice president, Business Development, Intermec, one of the primary RFID technology suppliers and a partner in both ACNielsen's Schaumburg Learning Lab and the Consumer 360 conference Learning Center, "As a leader in the marketing information industry, ACNielsen has positioned itself to be to be at the forefront of RFID technology. We are pleased to be providing a complete set of RFID hardware, software and integration support for the ACNielsen demos and look forward to working with the company as it learns more about the technology and its potential applications to the consumer packaged goods industry."

RFID technology is being tested by numerous industries to help track everything from airline baggage to cattle. Several major consumer packaged goods retailers and the U.S. Department of Defense have issued mandates to their vendors, requiring that all product pallets and cases bound for their distribution centers be RFID tagged within the next one to three years.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Auto-ID Center has been the driver of this technology over the past three years and will continue to enhance RFID with Auto-ID Centers in six different regions around the world. The Center's former executive director and co-founder, Kevin Ashton, is a keynote speaker at this year's Consumer 360 conference. As of November 2003, the commercialization of RFID has been turned over to EPCglobal, a joint venture between the Uniform Code Council and EAN International.

ACNielsen, a VNU business, is the world's leading marketing information provider. Offering services in more than 100 countries, the unit provides measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics and consumer attitudes and behavior. Clients rely on ACNielsen's market research, proprietary products, analytical tools and professional service to understand competitive performance, to uncover new opportunities and to raise the profitability of their marketing and sales campaigns.

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Friday, April 09, 2004

Animal RFID: Digital Angel to sell cattle tags in Canadian market, UK ... The location tracking and asset management company, Digital Angel Corporation, has launched its range of RFID cattle-tracking products in Canada through a ...

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Wednesday, April 07, 2004

DOD RFID Program : DoD Discusses New Supply Tracking System With Vendors

By Sgt. 1st Class Doug Sample, USA; American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 7, 2004 -- Defense Department officials met this week with hundreds of vendors to discuss plans for implementing technology common among today's retailers to revolutionize the supply chain to the battlefield.

The three-day summit at the Washington Hilton began April 6.

Military logisticians hope to take the "factory to the foxhole" by using radio- frequency identification, or RFID, tags to improve supply chains while reducing cost. The RFID technology has become part of a new DoD initiative making it mandatory for all items in the department's inventory to be distinguishable from one another.

Acting Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Michael Wynne said RFID technology is a way for DoD to ensure military forces get everything they need, from "food and water to supply parts."

Many retail stores today, most notably the Wal-Mart chain, use RFID tags to track products and control inventory costs. State transportation departments use the technology to monitor tollbooth traffic, and farmers use it to keep track of cattle.

Wynne said he intends to have RFID tags "capture information about all critical assets as they move throughout DoD's supply chain" to decrease supply-chain costs and improve efficiency. Military logisticians will know exactly what is on a shipment pallet or container without having to unwrap it, he said...

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Saturday, March 27, 2004

RFID for Animal Identification

... Livestock identification in the United States has been documented in large animal production industries dating back to the late 1800's and early 1900's. Cattle ranchers, to indicate ownership and deter theft, first used hot iron branding. Swine producers for registration and record keeping purposes used ear notches for individual animal identification. These two methods are rapidly losing popularity due to concerns about humane treatment of animals and a decrease in product value.

APHIS and its predecessor agencies began using ear tags, back tags, tattoos and face brands in the early 1960's. These identification methods were required by statutory regulations and successfully used to trace the movements of diseased animals during disease outbreaks and eradication programs. With this long history of contact with the field, APHIS has led the way in the development of national identification systems. The agency continues to place a high priority on livestock identification and database development.

Current methods of livestock identification include but are not limited to ear tags, back tags, neck chains, tail tags, freeze brands, tattoos, paint marks, and leg bands. Electronic identification methods including bar codes and/or radio frequency identification (RFID) transponders are becoming increasingly useful tools in herd management programs. As these new technologies develop and become compatible with one another, they may prove to be cost-effective tools to increase the efficiency of production. Similarly, regulatory agencies may benefit from these systems through increased accuracy and efficiency of tracing the movement of livestock.

The current primary driving forces behind the development of livestock identification systems are based on recognized industry needs. They include disease control and eradication, disease surveillance and monitoring, emergency response to foreign animal diseases, regionalization, global trade, livestock production efficiency, consumer concerns over food safety, and emergency management programs ...

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Using Maine RFID Technology to Strengthen Food Safety By U.S. Senator Olympia J. Snowe

Its clinical name is bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) – but we know it by its more common name, "mad cow disease." The discovery of the disease in a Holstein cow at a farm in Washington state caused concern among consumers, and major panic among producers, as more than 40 nations banned American beef from their stores, and cattle prices tumbled.

But the case has also illustrated a major shortcoming in our food safety system. Since the disease was believed to be transmitted to the infected cow in its feed, and symptoms take years to appear, officials needed to track down other cattle in that Holstein’s herd, cattle that would have been likely to eat the same feed – and may have been exposed to the disease.

Even now, though, federal agencies have not located all 81 cows in that herd. Even though officials reassure us that the risk to humans is minimal in this case, there is no question that by improving our ability to track livestock, we can enhance the security of our animals, our farms, and our food supply – and a company from the town of Raymond, Maine, could lead the way.

EmbedTech Industries is a small business with a unique specialty. The entrepreneurs there have developed a way to securely and inexpensively encase radio frequency identification (RFID) chips in plastic. The chips are then secure, protected from damage or sabotage, and readable with a scanner similar to a barcode reader. The technology has a vast number of possibilities, but its potential use to track livestock is in some ways, most intriguing. The concept is simple – by attaching an RFID-embedded ear tag to a calf, you create a system that can measure much more than just who owns an animal. The RFID chips are computer chips, a portable, recordable and scannable medium on which to record not just ownership, but full histories, such as vaccinations, growth measurements, and other critical information.

The promise this technology holds is why I have joined a bipartisan group of senators as a co-sponsor of the Animal Health Protection Act, which would direct the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a program to use technology like that developed by EmbedTech to electronically track the nation’s livestock. The U.S. Department of Agriculture already has the authority to implement a livestock tracking system – but it has lacked the funding and the technology. The bill provides $25 million to establish the system, technology that would have made tracking the 81 head of cattle in the current BSE case faster and more accurate, and could accomplish much more.

Our bill could be just the beginning. Since its introduction, President Bush has announced the inclusion of $60 million in the fiscal 2005 budget to fund a national cattle identification system, along with increased surveillance, and research and development into mad cow disease. By strengthening our ability to track and identify livestock, we can inspire confidence in our farm communities, protecting the farmers, as well as the farms. In Maine, that means 395 dairy farms and more than 2,000 jobs.

And those are just the jobs we have now. RFID chips are tiny, but their economic promise is immense for Maine. As a state, we are positioned to capture a share of this high-tech growth industry through companies like EmbedTech, as well as chipmakers, label makers and more. In short, we could create a winning environment for Maine farmers, consumers and workers. The electronic animal identification system could provide an affordable means of protecting the nation’s food supply, inspiring confidence in consumers and potentially, creating a growth manufacturing sector in the Maine economy.

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Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Leahy on RFID and Micro-Monitoring...

Remarks Of Senator Patrick Leahy
The Dawn of Micro Monitoring: It's Promise, And Its Challenges
To Privacy And Security
Conference On “Video Surveillance: Legal And Technological Challenges”
Georgetown University Law Center
Tuesday, March 23, 2004

First, I want to thank Georgetown University Law Center for hosting this conference. It’s always good to have an opportunity to return to my alma mater. I also thank the Center for American Progress, The Constitution Project and Wilmer, Cutler and Pickering for their roles in supporting this event. As a former prosecutor I am especially glad for the strong representation here from the law enforcement community. Chief Ramsey, good to see you again. And thanks to all the experts who have gathered here today to talk about these timely issues.

People Want To BE Safer

In our post-9/11 world, technology often has been our crucial but silent partner in helping us to ramp up our law enforcement and national security capabilities. We in this city are profoundly aware of the new risks we face. But we also need to do it right. The public does not want false assurances, nor do they want to be unduly alarmed. What the American people want is to actually be safer. And we still have a way to go in accomplishing that.

Tension Between Liberty And Security

In our constitutional system there is always tension between liberty and security – and never more so than since September 11th. One of the difficult challenges we face is to strike the right midpoint. Our constitutional checks and balances are intended to help us do that.

The video technologies you are discussing today offer tools that are better, faster and smarter, on scales of magnitude that are unprecedented. As an advocate of emerging technologies who also has a keen interest in them, I watch these breakthroughs with great interest.

I have sought to find ways to encourage the commercial sector to create new products and opportunities, and I have promoted use of new technologies by law enforcement agencies, while also protecting consumer privacy and constitutional freedoms. That was the balance I sought to strike in my work on CALEA and in other legislation that blends law enforcement’s needs, the needs of our robust technology sector, and the privacy interests of the American people. The hands-off approach to the Internet that I have favored is another example, and right now I am working with others to extend the Internet tax moratorium, to keep the Internet free from discriminatory and multiple state and local taxes.

On The Cusp Of A Micro-Monitoring Revolution

The marriage of information-gathering technology with information storing technology, manipulated in increasingly sophisticated databases, is beginning to produce the defining privacy challenge of the information age. Modern databases, networks and the Internet allow us to easily collect, store, distribute and combine video, audio and other digital trails of our daily transactions. We are on the verge of a revolution in micro-monitoring – the capability for the highly detailed, largely automatic, widespread surveillance of our daily lives.


And one of the most dramatic and dazzling new challenges we all will be facing soon is the emergence of a relatively new, surveillance-related technology called radio frequency identification -- R–F–I–D for short.

RFID tags are tiny computer chips that can be attached to physical items in order to provide identification and tracking by radio. Their potential invasiveness is obvious from their size, which, as shown in this picture, already is surprisingly small. And they will only get smaller.

In their basic function, RFID chips are like barcodes, which by now are ubiquitous in our stores and offices and crime labs and manufacturing plants.

Barcodes On Steroids

But RFID chips are like supercharged barcodes – barcodes on steroids, if you will. They are so small they can be tagged onto almost any object. They do not have to be in open view; RFID receivers just have to be within the vicinity – at a security checkpoint, in a doorway, inside a mailbox, atop a traffic light. And RFID chips can carry a lot more information than barcodes. Some versions are recordable so that they can carry along the object's entire history.

RFID chips are more powerful than today’s video surveillance technology. RFIDs are more reliable, they are 100 percent automatic, and they are likely to become more pervasive because they are significantly less expensive, and there are many business advantages to using them. RFIDs seem poised to become the catalyst that will launch the age of micro-monitoring.

I have followed RFID technology for some time and have welcomed its potential for many constructive uses. I have supported the use of RFIDs in a Vermont pilot program for tracking cattle to curtail outbreaks, like mad cow disease, and our Vermont program is now being emulated for a national tracking system. RFID technology may also help thwart prescription drug counterfeiting, a use the FDA encouraged in a recent report. Leading retailers like Wal-Mart and Target – as well as the Department of Defense -- are requiring its use by suppliers for inventory control. Fifty million pets around the world have embedded RFID chips. Of course, many of us already have experience with simpler versions of the technology in “smart tags” at toll booths and “speed passes” at gas stations.

But this is just the beginning. RFID technology is on the brink of widespread applications in manufacturing, distribution, retail, healthcare, safety, security, law enforcement, intellectual property protection and many other areas, including mundane applications like keeping track of personal possessions. Some visionaries imagine, quote, “an internet of objects” – a world in which billions of objects will report their location, identity, and history over wireless connections. Those days of long hunts around the house for lost keys and remote controls might be a frustration of the past.

These all raise exciting possibilities, but they also raise potentially troubling tangents. While it may be a good idea for a retailer to use RFID chips to manage its inventory, we would not want a retailer to put those tags on goods for sale without consumers’ knowledge, without knowing how to deactivate them, and without knowing what information will be collected and how it will be used. While we might want the Pentagon to be able to manage its supplies with RFID tags, we would not want an al Qaeda operative to find out about our resources by simply using a hidden RFID scanner in a war situation.

Drawing Lines

Of course these are just some of the foreseeable possibilities, and a lot depends on enhancements in the technology, reductions in costs, and developments in voluntary standard-setting, systems and infrastructure to manage RFID-collected information. But the RFID train is beginning to leave the station, and now is the right time to begin a national discussion about where, if at all, any lines will be drawn to protect privacy rights.

The need to draw some lines is already becoming clear. Recent reports revealed clandestine tests at a Wal-Mart store where RFID tags were inserted in packages of Max Factor lipsticks, with RFID scanners hidden on nearby shelves. The radio signals triggered nearby surveillance cameras to allow researchers 750 miles away to watch those consumers in action. A similar test occurred with Gillette razors at another Wal-Mart store.

These excesses suggest that Congress may need to step in at some point. When privacy intrusions reach the point of behavior that is absurdly out of bounds, we find ourselves having to deal with such issues as the “Video Voyeurism Prevention Act,” a bill now before Congress that would ban the use of camera to spy in bathrooms and up women’s skirts, a practice that by now has even been given a name, “upskirting,” which I’m sure is as new to you as it is to most of us in Congress.

Other powerful new technologies are on the horizon, like sensor technology and nanotechnology. All the more reason to think about these issues broadly and to establish guiding principles serving the twin goals of fostering useful technologies while keeping them from overtaking our civil liberties.

With RFID technology as with many other surveillance technologies, we need to consider how it will be used, and will it be effective. What information will it gather, and how long will that data be kept? Who will have access to those data banks, and under what checks-and-balances? Will the public have appropriate notice, opportunity to consent and due process in the case mistakes are made? How will the data be secured from theft, negligence and abuse, and how will accuracy be ensured? In what cases should law enforcement agencies be able to use this information, and what safeguards should apply? There should be a general presumption that Americans can know when their personal information is collected, and to see, check and correct any errors.

These are all questions we need to consider, and it is entirely possible that Congress may decide that enacting general parameters would be constructive. It is important that we let RFID technology reach its potential without unnecessary constraints. But it is equally important that we ensure protections against privacy invasions and other abuses. Technology may also help with the answers -- for example, “blockers” that deactivate RFID tags, and software that thwarts spyware.

Beginning A National Dialogue

There is no downside to a public dialogue about these issues, but there are many dangers in waiting too long to start. We need clear communication about the goals, plans and uses of the technology, so that we can think in advance about the best ways to encourage innovation, while conserving the public’s right to privacy.

We have seen this time and time again where a potentially good approach is hampered because of lack of communication with Congress, the public and lack of adequate consideration for privacy and civil liberties.

Take for example the so-called CAPPS II program. No doubt in a post-9/11 world, we should have an effective airline screening system. But the Administration quietly put this program together, collected passengers’ information without their knowledge and piloted this program without communicating with us and before privacy protections were in place. The result was a recent GAO analysis that showed pervasive problems in the screening program and admissions that we are now set back in our efforts to create an effective screening system.

As another example, the Administration recently funded the MATRIX program to provide law enforcement access to state government and commercial databases. This was potentially a useful crime-fighting tool. But there was insufficient information about the program and about potentially intrusive data mining capabilities, and there were unaddressed concerns about privacy protections. Now 11 out of 16 states participating in the program have pulled out – many, citing privacy concerns – thus hampering the effectiveness of the information sharing program. Again, had some of these issues been vetted in advance, we may have been able to enhance law enforcement intelligence.

Just recently, there were reports about the FBI’s new Strategic Medical Intelligence program, in which doctors have been enlisted to report to the FBI “any suspicious event,” such as an unusual rash or a lost finger. The goal of preventing bio-terrorism is important. But there are many unanswered questions about the program’s privacy protections and its ability to identify truly suspicious events and not unrelated personal medical situations. Hopefully, this program will not be hampered by lack of communication and oversight.

I have written oversight letters to the Justice Department and to the Department of Homeland Security on all of these issues and am waiting for their responses.

I want to make sure that mistakes like those are not repeated, especially with RFID technology, where there is so much potential value. That is why I asked to speak with you today, to begin the process of encouraging public dialogue in both the commercial and public sectors before the RFID genie is let fully out of its bottle.

This is a dialogue that should cut across the political spectrum, and it should include the possibility of constructive, bipartisan congressional hearings. The earlier we begin this discussion, the greater the prospects for success in reaching consensus on a set of guiding principles.

When several of us from both parties banded together years ago to found the Congressional Internet Caucus, we were united by our appreciation for what the Internet would do for our society. Years later, we remain united, we remain optimistic, and partisanship has never interfered in the Caucus’s work.

That is the spirit in which I hope a discussion can now begin on micro-monitoring.

Thank you for your interest in these cutting-edge issues, and thanks for this opportunity to share some ideas with you.

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Thursday, March 18, 2004

Digital Angel Corporation Receives Patent for Multi-Directional Cattle-Scanning Device

From MSN Money Health Services News, Mar 18, 2004 ...The antenna incorporates a new design that enables easier and more accurate scanning of animals eliminating many of the technical challenges associated with scanning animals that can result from differing tag placements and random animal movement. The multi-directional walk-through antenna has been granted patent number 6 700 547. Kevin Nieuwsma President of the Company's RFID Division commented Digital Angel already develops and markets a full line of livestock identification products ranging from visual ID tags sold since 1945 to RFID wearable tags and RFID implantable chips along with scanners that read these devices...

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Sunday, March 07, 2004

Advanced ID targets RFID firm for buyout

The RFID technology provider, Advanced ID Corporation, has entered into negotiations to acquire an as yet unnamed RFID business to "substantially increase the company's growing revenues". Barry Bennett, President and CEO for Advanced ID Corporation commented: "Successful completion of this acquisition would be expected to significantly increase our customer base and revenues, and represents a strong fit with our current business model"...

Advanced ID Corporation, which trades on the Over the Counter Bulletin Board (OTCBB:AIDO), markets microchip identification technologies referred to as radio frequency identification ("RFID") microchips and scanners. RFID allows for the positive identification and location tracking of animals or objects that are identified with a RFID microchip.

The Company currently supplies over 3,000 organizations such as animal shelters, veterinarians, breeders, government agencies, universities, zoos, research labs and fisheries with RFID devices for companion animals, exotics, equines, bovines, llamas, alpacas, ostriches, aquatic species, reptiles, migratory and endangered species.

Advanced ID is expanding its market from the companion animal and biological sciences sectors to include the livestock and inanimate industries.


More about: Advanced ID Corporation, through its wholly owned subsidiary AVID Canada Corp., markets and distributes microchip identification technologies referred to as radio frequency identification (RFID) microchips.

The Company supplies over 3,000 organizations such as animal shelters, veterinarians, breeders, government agencies, universities, zoos, research labs and fisheries with RFID devices for companion animals, exotics, equines, bovines, llamas, alpacas, ostriches, aquatic species, reptiles, migratory and endangered species.

Advanced ID's product line includes over 50 RFID devices (tags), readers and scanners, computers and other data storage hardware, along with its proprietary PETtrac software system.

PETtrac is Advanced ID's proprietary industry leading Internet database software for the companion animal market. PETtrac provides clients worldwide access to detailed information on their pets ensuring their safe return home should they become lost. The PETtrac program is approved by the Canadian Veterinarian Medical Association (CVMA) for national use in clinics, veterinarian offices and humane societies, thus tapping a market of over eight million animals.

As a pioneer in RFID for animal tagging in Canada, Advanced ID Corporation is well positioned to offered a boarder range of product catagories by:

Offering high integrity and cost effective identification solutions over current practices in the worldwide legislated/mandatory livestock markets with specially developed RFID products, and a web-based tracking and recovery system. In the livestock industry, the incidence in 1998 of the B.S.E. disease in Europe resulted in legislation to track animals throughout their life cycle. Current bar code technology is now being replaced by RFID technology resulting in significant market potential for the 110 million head of cattle in North America and the one billion head of cattle worldwide.

Expanding into other veterinary clinics, SPCAs, animal shelters and other markets. Entering into the following high-growth inanimate markets:
Asset tracking and protection, Inventory control, Supply chain and materials management, Logistics support systems, Hands-free entry system.
Industries are demanding increased efficiencies in logistics, distribution, asset management, and tracking.

Industry observers report that the US RFID market in 1997 was US$490 million in revenues and was forecast at $1.6 billion for 2002. The global RFID market reached over $900 million in 1999, and worldwide revenues are forecast to reach $7.5 billion by 2006. Advances in chip design, miniaturization, global positioning (GPS) tracking, read/write capabilities, and data storage have greatly expanded inanimate applications for RFID tags. RFID systems are being piloted and used in a wide range of retail, commercial and industrial applications.

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Thursday, February 19, 2004

A Discussion of RFID Technology...

RFID technology is another form of automated identification system, which is similar to bar codes. The recent history of RFID in this century includes: Technology was developed in the 1940's for defense applications. Market acceptance of the technology happened in the 1980's for cattle tracking applications. Recent interest is in making RFID technology more ubiquitous in the global value chain.

There are three main components of RFID technology: the RFID tag, the RFID antenna, and the RFID Reader. The RFID reader is the intelligent interface for the RFID information into the value chain.

RFID tags come in active and passive forms. Active tags leverage battery power. Passive RFID tags receive their power from the RFID antenna. Active tags sometimes...


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Tuesday, February 17, 2004

RFID in the News Today...

Animal Disease Protection in Europe leverages Phillips RFID Capabilities in electronic livestock identification, which benefits the consumer through safer food...

RFID cattle monitoring has been in used for a number of years now.

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