ScotEID livestock traceability

scoteid logoScotEID is the livestock traceability system for Scotland. On behalf of the Scottish Government and the Scottish livestock industry, SAOS continues to manage research and development of livestock movement data systems through supply chains, including the development of cattle electronic identification (EID). Our work on livestock traceability continues to advance towards the conclusion of an all species data system, working in real time. In preparation for the demise of the GB-wide cattle tracing system (CTS), work is in hand to extend ScotEID’s coverage to cattle births, deaths and farm business to farm business moves.

The ScotEID system’s primary functions encompass sheep, pig and cattle movement recording. It currently handles information for all aspects of sheep and pig traceability (including Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea buffers), plus movements of cattle within businesses as ‘ScotMoves’. Existing cattle functionality also includes checks for Bovine Virus Diarrhoea status, Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy negligible risk status and Scotch Beef quality assurance status, plus support for the Beef Efficiency Scheme. Support is offered for Rural Payments and Inspections Division activities, Rural and Environment Science and Analytical Services Division statistical data collection and data provision to Quality Meat Scotland and to EPIC (Epidemiology, Population Health and Infectious Disease Control: Scotland’s centre of expertise on animal disease outbreaks). ScotEID’s Huntly office provides assistance to farmers, markets, abattoirs and other users of the ScotEID database, providing them with assistance with managing and interpreting their data.

You can read more about how and why ScotEID was developed here: 

The continuing development of ScotEID is carried out within five separate workstreams

• Software systems support, refinement, data sharing and protection
• The help team providing assistance to all users of ScotEID
• Research, development and roll out of cattle EID systems
• Research and development of long-range wide area network (LoRaWAN) for data transfer from the field – SmartRural
• Development and roll out of horse residency and tracing – ScotEquine

The software systems and technical support encompasses:

• Sheep movements utilising EID
• Pig batch movements and pre-notification
• Cattle within business moves and registers (ScotMoves)
• Conterminous holdings mapping for ScotMoves
• Data management for the BVD eradication scheme
• BSE negligible status checker (currently switched off)
• Data management for the Beef Efficiency Scheme
• Scotch eligible cattle checker for QMS
• Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea (PED) mapping
• Data sharing and integration including: – CTS, APHA, RPID-LIS, eAML2, ARAMs, AMLS, EIDCymru, EPIC
• Data provision to RPID for inspection purposes
• Livestock market price and sales data for Rural and Environment Science and Analytical Services (RESAS)
• Isle of Man sheep movement
• Data transfer to/from farm software providers

Help team

Each member of the ScotEID help team, based in Huntly, has a practical working knowledge of each farm species and the regulations that deal with their movements and registers through the supply chain. E.g. their legislative knowledge includes:

• Sheep and Goats (Records, Identification and Movement) (Scotland) Order 2009;
• The Pigs (Records, Identification and Movement) (Scotland) Order 2011;
• The Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (Scotland) Order 2013;
• ScotMoves business rules.

ScotEID has documented processes and procedures for each function to support users and deal effectively with regulatory requirements. These processes are externally audited each year against ScotEIDs ISO 9001:2015 certification, carried out by NQA who provide accredited certification and support services.

As an example of daily work functions, for sheep these are to:

• Provide guidance to farmers on regulations, tagging, tag types, recording of movement, registration, managing records online using the holding register, SAMU documents.
• Assist farmers with incomplete records at inspections, printing out movement & ID lists from the database and emailing or posting them to the farmer.
• Liaise with markets and abattoirs regarding reporting to the ScotEID database where information may be missing or inaccurate.
• Visit marts & abattoirs to train new staff and maintain close working relationships.
• Assist farmers out with Scotland “Lookup for Non-Member ID Nos” of sheep bought in Scotland.
• Loan tag readers to support farmers with tag reading requirements.
• Monitor Mart sheep sales – checking for wrong CPH noting over-reads and under-reads.
• Retrieve information from sales reports of marts to compare numbers against CCP Monitoring.
• Check marts sales reports and recording them to check reads against them
• Issue guidance booklets and information.
• Communicate with Scottish Government on legislative matters
• Deal with lost and found sheep and police enquiries.
• Assist Animal Health with enquiries, particularly with welfare issues.
Research, development of cattle EID systems

The Government’s Programme for Scotland 2017-2018 includes a commitment to “…complete the ScotEID livestock database …”. Progress towards the goal of a multi-species traceability system has been made steadily since the inception of ScotEID in 2008. Defra’s announcement of the demise of the current GB-wide Cattle Tracing System (CTS)
provides a deadline for completion of the cattle module. In essence, this will entail extending existing ScotMoves functionality to also incorporate births, deaths and between-business moves.

The demise of CTS signals a shift away from a common GB-wide approach to one based on “distributed sovereign systems”. This gives greater local control over database design and operation, but also changes the nature of external relationships. In particular, whereas all Scottish cattle data are currently held by BCMS, completion of the ScotEID database means that control of the data will reside in Scotland.

The Programme for Scotland also includes a commitment to “…support a cattle electronic identification pilot…”. Electronic identification (EID) offers a convenient means of passing information accurately and rapidly to the ScotEID database. The research and development focus is on how animals are identified and on the procedures for electronic data transfer (EDT).

Cattle EID research and development focusses on the use of UHF (Ultra High Frequency) tags, rather than LF (Low Frequency) tags, as are used in sheep. UHF provides better flexibility and functionality, such as long read ranges and anti-collision, which are essential to provide efficiency within marts, abattoirs and farm field cattle identification. Ongoing work includes installing UHF read systems in markets, abattoirs and farms, and UHF tagged cattle are now being successfully read through each of these.

Read more about the development and roll out of the new ScotEquine horse residency and tracing system.