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Livestock Inspection Program
The Livestock Inspection Program is dedicated to providing asset protection for the livestock industry by recording brands, licensing feedlots and public livestock markets and by conducting surveillance and inspection of livestock at time of sale and upon out of state movement. The program is funded by fees paid by the livestock industry and receives no general fund dollars.
The History of Brands
The origin of branding livestock dates from 2700 B.C. Paintings in Egyptian tombs document branding oxen with hieroglyphics. Ancient Greeks and Romans marked livestock and slaves with a hot iron. Hernando Cortez introduced branding from Spain to the New World in 1541. He brought cattle stamped with his mark of three crosses.
The Balloon Bar brand, recorded to the Schnebly family of Ellensburg, is the oldest registered brand in the state of Washington. A great-great-grandmother, Mrs. Phillip Painter, originally brought the brand into the Willamette Valley from Missouri when Washington State was still a part of the Oregon Territory. On June 11, 1868, when the Washington Territory began registering brands, the Painter family, then living in Walla Walla, submitted the brand to authorities on a piece of burned leather for recording. Six generations later this brand is still found on livestock grazing in the Kittitas Valley.
Livestock Advisory Committee
The Livestock Advisory Committee was established by the Legislature in 1993 to provide advice to the Director of Agriculture regarding the Livestock Inspection Program. The committee consists of six members appointed by the director and each appointee serves a three-year term.
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