AUSTRALIA’S wool exporters and brokers believes industry stakeholders must be given the opportunity to adjust their submissions to a National Wool Declaration review after viewing a finalised sheep freeze branding research report.
The Australian Wool Exchange closed off submission to the NWD review on 6 April, despite a call from the national exporter body, supported by brokers, to extend submissions until the research results were available.
Executive director of the Australian Council of Wool Exporters and Processors, Peter Morgan, told Sheep Central all those who have made submissions to the review should be given an opportunity to amend their submissions if they want to.
“They should have that option.”
Mr Morgan said he had been told by sheep freeze branding developer John Steinfort that the veterinarian was seeking permission from the University of Melbourne to make the final research report available.
National Council of Wool Selling Brokers of Australia president Rowan Woods also believed industry stakeholders should be given access to the finalised research results and allowed to amend their submissions to the review if necessary.
ACWEP president, Josh Lamb, said ACWEP and the Private Treaty Wool Merchants of Australia have become aware via Sheep Central that the University of Melbourne final report from the research on the use of liquid nitrogen has been released.
“Unfortunately, we are not in a position to comment on the outcomes as we have not yet seen the Report, but have sought copies from AWEX; and from Dr Steinfort, who is waiting on approval from the University of Melbourne.
“We do not know whether the outcomes of the final report will affect the submissions made to the NWD Review,” he said.
“The only way to determine this is by releasing the final report to all those who made submissions and re-opening the previous closing date for any amended submissions.”
It remains unclear who can release the research results, which have been provided to Dr Steinfort and to AWEX via Dr Steinfort’s NWD review submission on 6 April.
Dr Steinfort told Sheep Central today that he had written two emails last week to the University of Melbourne principal scientists doing the research project, but hadn’t received a reply.
“I spoke to Ellen Jongman late Friday and she told me we had a right to release publicly if we wished.
“This was the first I knew that we could,” he said.
“However, she did discuss that by releasing publicly, then this would most likely stop the application process to publish a paper and for the paper to be published in scientific journal.”
Dr Steinfort late last year gave permission for Dr Jongman to present preliminary results from the research at a forum in December last year and these were subsequently published on the National Primary Industries Animal Welfare RD&E Strategy website. Dr Jongman concluded that freeze branding with meloxicam pain relief appeared to be more painful than tail docking and castration alone, and similar to mulesing with meloxicam, on the day of application.
AWEX chief executive officer Mark Grave has rejected calls to extend the review’s submission deadline past 6 April. Peak grower body WoolProducers Australia has also called the review “premature”.
Mr Grave today did not respond to a question on whether industry stakeholders will be given an opportunity to change their submissions to the NWD review if the finalised research results become publicly available in coming weeks.