Brand Registration & Livestock Registry
This month at BLPA, amongst other things, we are starting a drive to get all cattle owners to register, renew or get up to date with their brand registration. All cattle in Belize should be branded before the turn 12 months of age and this brand needs to be registered in the Belize Brand Registry annually. The Registry, which is administered by the BLPA and based at their offices in Belmopan, was brought into being under the Cattle Branding Act number 207 and was revised in December 2000 and states that, all cattle born should be branded before they reach 12 months of age or prior to sale. When you buy an animal you should brand it within 30 days of taking ownership with your own brand. This new brand should in no way alter, obscure or indeed come into contact with the original brand.
This procedure is very important, as without branding your animals it is almost impossible to prove ownership in the case of rustling, which as we all know is reaching almost epidemic proportions in some areas of country especially parts of the Belize and Cayo Districts. However, with the advent of the National Cattle Sweep and the BLR traceability system, as you all know, each individual animal in your herd, whether you have only 5 animals or 500 animals, is given two tags with a number unique to that animal, when this is coupled up with your brand it makes it much easier to identify the origin of an animal and so when an animal is being transported, movement permits must be filled in recording the origin and destination of the animal and so when an inspection at a police or BAHA checkpoint, or even in a slaughterhouse or butchers shop is made, this animal can be traced right back to the owner thus ensuring that it actually belongs to the seller and has not been stolen or otherwise misappropriated.
What of the cost you may ask? Well it is cheap at only $10 per year to keep your brand up to date this is a small price to pay to help ensure that in the event of theft, you can prove ownership of your animals, which may be worth many thousands of dollars. In the case of registering a new brand, or change of ownership of a brand. A small admin fee of $20 is charged. This admin fee is also charged when bringing a brand up to date if you have forgotten to register for some time. To save the hassle of registering every year you can pay for five years in advance. All this can be done at our offices in Belmopan. Please take the time to come in and get your brand registered or up to date and while you are there ask about what other services and assistance BLPA can offer to our members. You will be surprised!!