VFF to en­sure eIDs do not have farm­ers fac­ing ad­di­tional costs

North East & Goulburn Murray Farmer - - NEWS -

THE Vic­to­rian Farm­ers Fed­er­a­tion (VFF) live­stock group pres­i­dent Leonard Val­lance said the lobby group is de­ter­mined to ne­go­ti­ate the best out­come for pro­duc­ers fol­low­ing the an­nounce­ment of manda­tory elec­tronic tag­ging for sheep and goats.

“We will be work­ing hard to en­sure farm­ers and other stake­hold­ers will not face ad­di­tional costs by this de­ci­sion of gov­ern­ment to man­date elec­tronic tags in sheep and goats,” he said.

“Live­stock pro­duc­ers need a guar­an­tee that they won’t be dis­ad­van­taged by the cost of fit­ting elec­tronic tags to their stock.

“The State Gov­ern­ment has of­fered to in­vest in eIDs for the first year, but this in­vest­ment needs to be guar­an­teed for the long term.

“Gov­ern­ments – state and fed­eral – need to re­mem­ber they have a com­mu­nity obli­ga­tion to con­trib­ute to the cost of trace­abil­ity when it comes to ma­jor live­stock dis­ease out­breaks that af­fect ev­ery­one, not just farm­ers,” Mr Val­lance said.

He added that the group is de­ter­mined to ne­go­ti­ate the best out­come for live­stock pro­duc­ers to en­sure there is no im­pact on live­stock op­er­a­tions across Vic­to­ria.

“We will make it clear to gov­ern­ment that the cost of post farm gate eID in­fras­truc­ture must not be im­posed on farm­ers,” he said.

Not all groups are happy about the manda­tory tag­ging with the Aus­tralian Live­stock and Prop­erty Agents As­so­ci­a­tion (ALPA) frus­trated and dis­ap­pointed with the de­ci­sion.

The ALPA said the de­ci­sion goes against the State Gov­ern­ment’s com­mit­ment to na­tional in­dus­try bod­ies and other states and ter­ri­to­ries that it would not man­date tags un­til a na­tional ap­proach was agreed on and with in­dus­try con­sul­ta­tion.

The group said the to­tal dis­re­gard for this com­mit­ment and lack of na­tional con­sul­ta­tion is dis­ap­point­ing.

ALPA chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Andy Madi­gan said no one from the State Gov­ern­ment can demon­strate how the sys­tem can work in a sa­le­yard en­vi­ron­ment at com­mer­cial speeds.

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