Lamb Production

Agriculture Victoria spruiks cheaper electronic sheep and cattle tags

Sheep Central, August 3, 2016
Lambs with electronic EID or RFID tags.

Lambs with electronic EID or RFID tags.

VICTORIAN Government promotion of electronic ear tags for sheep and goats continued this week with two approved manufacturers lowering their online prices.

Allflex have reduced the price of their electronic RapIDTag to 89 cents. Datamars has reduced the price of its electronic Sheep (FET) tag to 80 cents and cut the price of its cattle (round) tag to 82 cents when purchased online. These tags are only available at these subsidised prices to Victorian Producer Identification Code (PIC) holders and not to sheep producers in other states.

The cheapest electronic tag available in Victoria costs 77 cents and is manufactured by Victorian-based supplier Leader Products.

The use of electronic ID tags for sheep is voluntary, but because they can be machine-read in a fraction of a second they have significant productivity benefits for farmers over visual tags, Agriculture Victoria said.

Victoria’s Chief Veterinary Officer Dr Charles Milne said that cheaper tags will help more Victorian producers harness the benefits of electronic identification.

“By delivering cheaper electronic tags and more choice, we are making the use of electronic identification even more attractive for sheep and goat producers,” he said.

The use of sheep EID tags is part of ensuring Victoria has a reliable and robust tracking and tracing system for livestock, should there be an emergency animal disease or food safety issue, Agriculture Victoria said.

“Our livestock industries have exports of $6.7 billion a year—it’s vital that we have the best possible systems in place to help safeguard this vital trade,” Dr Milne said.

Livestock producer and chairman of Victoria’s Sheep and Goat Identification Advisory Committee, Stuart McLean, pointed out the many opportunities available with the use of electronic identification technology.

“I would urge everyone across the sector to have a good look at what is available and to consider how they might utilise new systems to improve effectiveness and efficiencies across the supply chain,” Mr McLean said.

For further information or to purchase tags, call the Department’s toll-free Helpline on 1800 678 779 during office hours, or visit www.vic.gov.au/nlis

Source: Agriculture Victoria.

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