Sheep EID system harmonisation heads AMIC’s NSW wishlist

Sheep Central, March 6, 2023

AMIC CEO Patrick Hutchinson.

HARMONISATION of the proposed mandatory sheep and goat electronic identification system heads the wishlist of Australia’s meat processors in the lead-up to the New South Wales election on 25 March.

The Australian Meat Industry Council said it will ensure that issues affecting the meat industry are heard and addressed by whoever forms government after the election.

AMIC would like to see the next NSW Government commit to nationally harmonised sheep and goat EID timelines.

AMIC chief executive officer Patrick Hutchinson said having consistent sheep and goat traceability requirements across state and territory borders will reduce uncertainty and disruption to commercial activity.

“Harmonisation will minimise the complexity for businesses operating and transacting across state borders and enable clear and consistent communication of changes to stakeholders along the supply chain.

“A harmonised transition to EID will allow Australia to present a united and straight-forward message of changes to trading partners,” he said.

The areas the Australian Meat Industry Council has identified in which the meat industry needed to work with the New South Wales Government also included:

  • Addressing labour shortages by increasing the number of fee-free apprenticeships and traineeships.
  • Lowering payroll tax.
  • Increasing the focus on animal disease breakout preparedness.
  • Addressing the cost of energy to businesses.

Mr Hutchinson said polls are indicating that there is a good chance that NSW will see a change in government and perhaps even a minority government.

“As well as tackling major challenges and policy shifts underway on the national stage, such as trade policy and industrial relations reform, AMIC will continue to engage the New South Wales Government to address the state-specific concerns of our processor, smallgoods and retail members,” he said.

AMIC said meat industry businesses are suffering from a critical labour shortage and AMIC supports an increase in fee-free apprenticeships and traineeships in NSW to help address this shortage. It believes lowering payroll tax will also go a long way in helping businesses in the meat industry get through difficult times.

“Like all industry, our industry is suffering from a labour shortage, particularly skilled labour and by increasing the amount for fee-free apprenticeships and traineeships in NSW, the Government can make a real difference in the output of the industry.

“Lowering the payroll tax rate will help the meat industry deal with increasing costs and ultimately it could help the amount that consumers pay at their local independent butchers and supermarkets,” Mr Hutchinson said.

“Cost of living is a real issue and this can be eased by lowering the tax burden on businesses in NSW.

“As soon as the election is over, AMIC is excited to continuing working whoever is in Government to ensure the long-term viability of the meat industry and the security of our food chain.” Mr Hutchinson said.

The current NSW Government’s timeline for sheep and goat electronic identification implementation includes that:

All meat processors will be required to start EID scanning farmed sheep and goats from 30 June 2024.

All sheep and farmed goats born on or after 1 January 2025 will require an EID device.

All saleyards, depots and property to property transfers of stock will require EID scanning from 1 January 2025.

All farmed sheep and goats leaving a property will require an EID device from 1 January 2027.


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