Johne's Disease Calf Accreditation Program - JDCAP
Note Number: AG1204
Published: June 2005
Updated: January 2020
This agriculture note describes the Victorian Johne's Disease Calf Accreditation Program (JDCAP).
JDCAP is an audited calf-rearing program designed to minimise the risk of spreading Johne's disease in cattle, should it be present, from adult cattle to the replacement calves reared within a dairy herd.
Calves raised under an accredited rearing system have a lower risk of having Johne's disease than non-accredited calves.
The advantages of JDCAP are:
- This program will benefit you if you wish to sell cattle and provide purchasers with some assurance about the Johne's disease status and rearing of the cattle.
- It will benefit buyers who can seek JDCAP calves by preference.
- Calves reared under JDCAP obtain 3 credits in the National Dairy Bovine Johne's Disease Assurance Score system.
- This program will benefit your herd if infection is present but has not yet been detected, because it will reduce the risk of your replacement calves becoming infected.
- The program will benefit your herd if it is not currently infected because it will protect your calves should an infected animal be inadvertently introduced in the future.
- Herds known to have Johne's disease can also benefit from implementing this program because it will minimise the risk of spread of the disease to replacements, and allow enhanced trading options.
Aims of the program
The accreditation program aims to reduce the risk of calves becoming infected with the Johne's disease bacterium by preventing calves from having contact with manure and dairy effluent from adult cattle and reducing exposure to potentially contaminated milk.
The JDCAP program does not guarantee the production of Johne's disease-free calves.
Any Victorian dairy herd is eligible to enter JDCAP.
Note that no testing of the herd is required to participate in JDCAP.
Participating owners must agree to observe certain conditions:
- The property must be subject to inspection and approval by an Agriculture Victoria approved veterinarian prior to the commencement of accreditation.
- All replacement calves must be separated from their mother within 12 hours of birth.
- Cows must calve in an area that is free of dairy effluent or large amounts of manure.
- The calf-rearing area must be free of any dairy effluent or cow manure.
- Only clean water, preferably tank, town or bore water, must be supplied for calves for drinking or preparing calf milk-replacer.
- Only milk from low-risk cattle or calf milk-replacer must be fed to calves.
- Once calves are weaned they can only graze paddocks that have not been grazed by adult cattle during the previous 12 months
- The grazing area for weaned calves must be free of any drainage or effluent.
The owner is required to signs a Herd Owner Agreement form which is endorsed by the approved veterinarian. The veterinarian then provides the herd owner with a JDCAP registered Certificate of Compliance which is valid for 12 months. The calf management program is reviewed and audited annually by the approved veterinarian.
Further information about JDCAP can be obtained from your veterinary practitioner, Agriculture Victoria animal health staff or the Agriculture Victoria website.
The previous version of this Agriculture Note was reviewed by Dr Michael Jeffers and published in December 2005. This January 2020 version was updated by Dr David Champness.
Published and Authorised by:
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