Tag fund­ing still in doubt

Shepparton News - Country News - - MAN’S BEST FRIEND -

Vic­to­rian pro­duc­ers still do not know if the An­drews Gov­ern­ment will sub­sidise elec­tronic iden­ti­fi­ca­tion tags for sheep and goats in 2018, ac­cord­ing to Shadow Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Peter Walsh.

Mr Walsh said Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Jaala Pul­ford re­fused to con­firm if the An­drews Gov­ern­ment would sub­sidise tags in 2018 and said her ad­mis­sions con­firmed the process was se­verely de­layed.

Mr Walsh urged Vic­to­rian sheep and goat pro­duc­ers to hold off buy­ing tags for next year un­til the An­drews Gov­ern­ment was able to con­firm a price.

‘‘Farm­ers have com­pleted their bud­gets for next year but they’ve got no idea how much the An­drews La­bor Gov­ern­ment will charge them to com­ply with its eID scheme in 2018,’’ he said.

‘‘There’s a huge dis­crep­ancy in cost — a sub­sidised rate of 37¢ or the full rate of 74¢.

‘‘Pro­duc­ers should hold off buy­ing tags un­til the An­drews Gov­ern­ment pro­vides them with cer­tainty.’’

Mr Walsh said un­der La­bor’s plan, in­for­ma­tion should have started be­ing up­loaded to the Na­tional Live­stock Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion Scheme from July 1 this year but in prac­tice, none of the in­for­ma­tion is be­ing up­loaded to the NLIS be­cause the soft­ware doesn’t ex­ist to do it.

‘‘In­dus­try is on board with the im­ple­men­ta­tion of eID but sa­le­yard op­er­a­tors and agents are con­cerned that things are mov­ing too slowly, the money is dry­ing up too quickly and dead­lines to be­gin scan­ning are ap­proach­ing too quickly.

‘‘It’s time the min­is­ter se­ri­ously con­sid­ered the ap­pro­pri­ate­ness of some of her dead­lines.

‘‘We know there are is­sues with soft­ware com­pat­i­bil­ity, scan­ning at sa­le­yards and pos­si­ble cost blowouts when La­bor’s meek $2.8 mil­lion fund for sa­le­yards dries up.

‘‘The An­drews Gov­ern­ment thought in­dus­try could just ap­ply the sys­tems used for cat­tle to sheep and goats. It’s now ap­par­ent that just won’t work.’’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.