Rationale for change
NLIS (Sheep and Goats) was introduced in 2006, based on the use of visually readable tags along with paper-based movement documents.
The mob-based visual tag system did not meet National Traceability Performance Standards (NLTPS) and enhancements were not practical or cost effective for Victoria. This change was recommended by the Victorian Auditor General's Office review of Livestock Biosecurity (PDF - 3.4 MB) .
The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) released a Decision Regulation Impact Statement (DRIS) for improving the NLIS. It concluded that it is not practical or cost effective for Victoria to enhance the mob-based visual tag system.
When considering improvement to NLIS (Sheep & Goats) the Decision DRIS highlights a need to ensure the system is efficient in the time taken from decision to action and the resources requirements and burden of regulation upon industry be balanced with the need for whole of life traceability against the NLTPS.
The change to introduce an electronic sheep and goat traceability system was recommended by the Victorian Auditor General's Office review of Livestock Biosecurity.
Electronic identification tags have been mandatory in the cattle industry for over a decade. In addition to the traceability benefits during a disease outbreak or food safety emergency, the storage of individual animal data provides opportunities for producers to further improve their production systems.
Read about the reasoning behind these changes by downloading the factsheet:
- Implementation of electronic identification of sheep and goats in Victoria (PDF - 3.1 MB)
- Implementation of electronic identification of sheep and goats in Victoria (WORD - 116.0 KB)
Why a phased approach?
The Victorian Minister for Agriculture announced on 24 August 2016 that Victoria would phase-in an electronic identification system for sheep and goats. Victorian sheep and goat industries have played a significant role in shaping the electronic NLIS through extensive engagement and consultation along the entire supply chain.
A phased approach was chosen to allow time for all parts of the supply chain to adapt to the new system.
Key considerations for the phased implementation approach included how electronic information might be collected, recorded and used to add value to livestock production and processing.
See how Victoria is achieving a success a successful transition to the electronic identification of sheep and goats:
- Achieving a successful transition (PDF - 712.7 KB)
- Achieving a successful transition (WORD - 161.1 KB)