All about SET Tags

Shearwell SET tags are light, durable and easy to apply. Our one-piece ear tag is popular around the world, with more than 80 million sold in the past five years alone.

The Shearwell SET tag is CSIP-approved. In trials its retention rate has proven second to none. Visual and electronic tags use the same Shearwell applicator.

Yellow Shearwell SET tag in closed position
Closed ASET Tag end-on

The inner surfaces of the tag are smooth and rounded to avoid pinch points and reduce the risk of infection. Both RFID and visual tags are laser-etched for easy reading throughout the life of the animal.

The Shearwell SET tag was first developed in 1990. Since then many millions have been sold worldwide, of which some 16.7 million are electronic (EID) tags equipped with an RFID chip. In the UK, in the face of stiff competition from multiple tag vendors, the Shearwell SET tag has consistently outsold all others and is the tag of choice.

Scroll down and read on for more about our SET tag design, its benefits as well as some troubleshooting tips so you can get the best out of them.

SET Tags

The Shearwell SET tag was introduced to Canada in 2008. It is used worldwide, both with and without an RFID insert for electronic identification.

World map with dots indicating SET tag sales
Shearwell SET Tags the world over
ASET tag with Canadian markings from above
  • Laser-etched
  • Extra sharp pin
    for better penetration
  • Quick to apply
  • 99.5% retention rate
  • One-piece,
      lifetime tag
  • Covered pin
  • Room for growth
  • Lightweight
    for day old lambs
ASET applicator with black jaws

SET Tag Applicator

The correct applicator for SET tags have black jaw inserts. SET tags will not work properly in the green jaws of an old applicator!

Tag Applicators

The green jaw applicators were used in Canada from 2008 to 2014. If you are still using green jaws in your tag applicator you need to replace the green inserts with black inserts. SET tags will not fit in the green jaws of an old applicator!

ESET tag applicator with green jaws

Old Tag Applicator

ASET tag with Canadian markings from above

Shearwell SET tags have become the tags of choice for so many farmers in so many countries for good reason. But we don’t stand still even with a winning design. We’ve continued to work with the design, the material and with best tagging practice to help ensure you get the very best out of your tags.

Take a look through the list below and see if you are following the recommended and best practice to make your animals’ tags work best for you.

What improvements have been made to the SET tag?

How can I tell which applicator I need to use?

How do I change the jaws in my applicator?

How should I store SET tags?

Why are storage conditions so important for SET tags?

Why does the price of SET tags differ in other countries?

Does it matter which way the tags go in the ear?

Why won’t a tag read?

Tagging problem: The spike bends out instead of piercing the ear as I squeeze the applicator

Tagging problem: The tag breaks at the hinge end instead of bending

Tagging problems: Still having trouble, who do I contact?