Farmers in West Australia’s south have expressed considerations in regards to the federal authorities’s push to make digital identification tags necessary for all sheep and goats from 2025.
- Digital Identification (eID) tags will likely be necessary from 2025 for traceability functions throughout the nation
- Farmers promoting lambs to the abattoir really feel e-tagging is expensive and fewer useful after they solely have them for six to 10 months
- Advantages embrace improved illness traceability, extra environment friendly breeding and compatibility with auto-drafting know-how
Australia’s biosecurity got here beneath the microscope once more final 12 months after the outbreak of foot-and-mouth illness (FMD) in Bali.
Digital Identification (eID) tagging is believed to be the important thing to defending the livestock business in opposition to the unfold of illness.
It depends on an analogous strategy to the contract tracing methodology used within the COVID-19 pandemic.
A number of sheep producers have advised the ABC their major concern with e-tags is the extra price of tagging terminal lambs every year.
Wagin sheep farmer Wade Brockway mentioned he was unsure about whether or not it made sense to tag lambs each season in the event that they had been heading on to the abattoir.
“I do not know if it is advisable put an eID tag on a lamb that you will have in your farm for six to 10 months after which ship it up the highway to the processor,” he mentioned.
“I suppose you get extra profit from it if you are going to maintain a ewe in your property for six years and you will retailer knowledge on it and use [the data].
“You are feeling prefer it’s simply one other layer of forms the place you have simply bought to tick a couple of extra bins.”
Division of Main Industries and Regional Improvement (DPIRD) deputy chief veterinary officer Chris Rodwell advised ABC Nation Hour there can be no exemption for prime lambs beneath 12 months.
“For the system to work in the best means it should be all in,” he mentioned.
Advantages stretch past biosecurity
Some producers have already adopted the eID tagging know-how, which has makes use of past bettering the traceability of livestock for biosecurity.
Vasse farmer Graham Stuart has been utilizing the tags for the final 12 years and says the know-how has improved productiveness on his farm.
“We first began out utilizing it to report mating or lambing info, which I used to be initially doing by manually studying current ear tags,” he mentioned.
“However that was a really tough job.”
Mr Stuart admits the price of gear and know-how related to e-tags is within the tens of 1000’s however says it has been a worthwhile funding for with the ability to routinely weigh and type sheep.
“My perception is that it is not a lot the associated fee that is paying off, it is the benefit of use, significantly when you begin utilizing auto drafting,” he mentioned.
Whereas the tags Mr Stuart makes use of are disposable, there are reusable choices available on the market with costs ranging wherever from $2 to $4 every relying on the provider and amount.
Some have advised the reusable tags may very well be eliminated by the abattoirs and despatched again to farmers.
Nevertheless, there are considerations within the business that this may incur a further price that farmers can be anticipated to pay for.