WASHINGTON – Three new contingency livestock inspections sites are open in New Mexico and Arizona, the US Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) reported. The temporary facilities are in Nogales and Douglas, Ariz., and Columbus, NM.

APHIS established the facilities to maintain the flow of trade across the US border with Mexico. Several hundred thousand head of cattle cross through border locations each year, and the alternative sites will facilitate the flow of livestock if APHIS officials are unable to cross into Mexico to conduct inspections.

“Our hope is that we never have to use one of these facilities and our inspectors can continue to safely cross into Mexico to conduct inspections” said Undersecretary of Marketing and Regulatory Programs Edward Avalos. “But we are prepared to adjust and utilize these facilities, which have the same capacity as the inspection locations in Mexico, to maintain trade at the same level and minimize impact to the local economies.”