Good result from state-wide compliance operation

3 Apr 2017

Results from the state-wide National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) compliance operation for sheep and goats undertaken by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and Local Land Services indicate a satisfactory overall compliance result.

The operation codenamed ‘Mary’ was conducted last year at sheep saleyards and processing plants across NSW with the purpose of measuring and increasing NLIS compliance.

NSW DPI Director of Biosecurity & Food Safety Compliance, Peter Day said the results show there is strong support in NSW for the current mob-based traceability system for sheep and goats, however compliance rates can always be improved.

“During the operation, we conducted 78 compliance audits in eight Local Land Service districts,” Mr Day said.

“The audits focused on the accuracy of NVDs for vendor bred and non-vendor bred lots, untagged sheep, and traceability documentation, such as NVDs accompanying each consignment for slaughter at export and domestic abattoirs.

“NSW DPI were satisfied with compliance levels overall with the exception of non-vendor bred NVD compliance. However comparison of results from the last exercise in 2013 showed that Non-vendor bred NVD compliance had improved from 69% to 86%.”

Operation Mary results include:

  • Tagging compliance – 99.86 per cent
  • Non-vendor bred NVD compliance – 86.71 per cent
  • Vendor bred NVD compliance – 98.26 per cent

“Operation Mary delivered comprehensive data around the current level of compliance and will allow us to focus our work with the industry to support increased levels of compliance into the future,” Mr Day said.

“During Operation Mary a total of 149 warning letters were issued to producers for breaches of NLIS and one penalty notice.

“We are now undertaking further activities including a project to improve the recording of all livestock movements between properties. This project involves education and compliance activities to improve support for and compliance with NLIS for sheep and goats in NSW.

“The key to achieving high levels of traceability is for all livestock movements to be recorded in the NLIS database, including the movements of livestock onto properties after purchase through sites such as Auctions Plus.

“While NSW has a good identification system for tracing livestock from paddock to plate through the NLIS, the results from Operation Mary and recent similar national exercises highlight the importance of recording all movements of livestock in the NLIS database including property to property movements.

NLIS allows DPI and Local Land Services to respond quickly to a major food safety or disease incident, and helps to ensure access to valuable export markets are maintained. It also ensures biosecure, profitable, productive and sustainable primary industries in NSW.

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