NEW South Wales sheep and goat producers are being given their say on electronic identification in a confidential survey being circulated by Charles Sturt University.
The survey is part of research examining the barriers and drivers for the implementation of electronic individual identification for sheep and goats.
The university said the survey findings will inform how to improve traceability in the industries through the National Livestock Identification System.
Research leader Associate Professor Marta Hernandez-Jover in Charles Sturt School of Agricultural, Environmental and Veterinary Sciences and the Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation, said the online survey aimed to understand the barriers and drivers for implementing electronic identification (EID) for sheep and goats.
“A mob-based system is currently used for identifying and tracing sheep and goats in NSW.
“The National Livestock Identification System links animals with the properties on which they are born by using visually readable ear tags printed with a Property Identification Code,” Professor Hernandez-Jover said.
“For more than 10 years, the sheep and goat industries in Australia have explored and adopted different methods to improve livestock traceability and electronic identification (eID) is one of these methods.
“This research is an opportunity for sheep and goat producers to share their insight and experience,” she said.
Victoria is the only Australian that has mandated the use of electronic ear tags in sheep and goats; however, mandating the individual digital/electronic identification of all livestock in Australia is a key recommendation among five presented by SAFEMEAT to the National Biosecurity Committee in March last year.
The confidential survey is available online here, https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/eIDQQ until Friday 10 December and will take about 25 minutes to complete.
Professor Hernandez-Jover said the survey builds on earlier interviews with stakeholders in the sheep and goat supply chain.
“We’ve spoken to industry associations, livestock producers, stock agents, saleyard operators and livestock transporters to get a better understanding of current perspectives on NLIS and the potential impacts of implementing eID within their industries,” she said.
The research will provide valuable information on how to best improve traceability in the sheep and goat industries in NSW. It has been approved by the Charles Sturt University’s Human Research Ethics Committee.
Biosecurity and animal health are key areas of research that will be part of Charles Sturt’s new Agriculture, Water and Environment Institute.