Sunday, November 25, 2012

Santa Teresa's livestock crossing a booming business

On any given day at the Santa Teresa International Export/Import Livestock Crossing, hundreds and even thousands of head of cattle come through a gate in the fence that marks the border between the U.S. and Mexico. This year, Daniel Manzanares, director of the facility, said he expects to break the 400,000 head of cattle mark, the most ever. "That'd be a record," Manzanares said. He said more than $200 million worth of cattle passes through the crossing - which literally straddles the international border - each year. The facility, which is 21 years old and 35 acres in size, can hold as many as 4,400 head of cattle on any given day. In the past five year, more than $1 million in infrastructure improvements have been put into the facility, which is owned by a co-op of Mexican ranchers, the Union Ganadera Regional De Chihuahua CO-OP Inc. A United States Department of Agriculture grant of about $50,000 was used to install new cameras.  "We're completely under security surveillance at all times," Manzanares said. The USDA works on the Mexican side of the border and has an office to inspect all the animals and make sure they are free of ectoparasites and ticks. They conduct TB tests and ensure the animals' tag numbers are correct with the paperwork. There's also the security aspect of working right on the border. At any given time, U.S. Customs vehicles with a blue stripe or U.S. Border Patrol with the green-stripe trucks can be seen at the facility, sometimes right up next to the gate...more

No comments: