Electronic identification options without a big price tag
25 August 2016
Compulsory electronic identification for Victorian sheep and goats is on its way but there is no need for producers to rush out and buy new equipment.
Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford, yesterday announced that from 1 January 2017 sheep and goats born in Victoria will require an electronic identification tag, linked to the National Livestock Identification System (NLIS), before being dispatched to a saleyard, abattoir or another property.
Victoria's Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Charles Milne, said the aim is to make sure the transition to electronic identification over the coming years is as smooth as possible for producers.
"There will be a phased implementation for electronic identification starting with consultation across the sheep and goat industries on how we can make this work practically across the entire supply chain," Dr Milne said.
"Once the implementation standards are confirmed, Agriculture Victoria will coordinate information sessions and workshops to help farmers understand the system and, where appropriate, to use it to enhance on-farm decisions."
Consultation will also occur on a transition package, that includes funding support.
"Producers should not rush into any purchases now as a result of yesterday's announcement, they should wait to find out what funding and information will be available in the next four to five weeks."
"In real terms, with the autumn drop in mind, electronic tagging for most will not begin for over six months."
The Victorian Government has made a commitment to keep the costs for farmers neutral for the first year of this change.
"With increased demand for the tags and scanning technology, it is likely prices will fall."
To read the draft electronic NLIS sheep and goat standards and find out more on this change, visit www.agriculture.vic.gov.au/sheepEID.
Categorised under: Agriculture