This past year for OSPRI has seen rebuilding.
This means that all cattle must be tagged and registered in the NAIT system, even if they are not leaving the property or were born before the NAIT programme launched in July 2012 (the transition period for deer ends on 1 March 2016).
Dr Stu Hutchings, OSPRI group manager, says, “Our goal is to get everybody on board with NAIT so we can all reap the benefits of tighter TB control and continued access to export markets. The only way to make this happen is if farmers play their part and fulfil their NAIT obligations.”
A key focus over the coming months will be working with farmers to help them understand and meet their obligations. The information collected by NAIT allows OSPRI to hold and report on movement and location data to support food safety and biosecurity systems within New Zealand.
“We’ve got a team out in the field dedicated to helping farmers meet their obligations. We need every cattle and deer farmer to provide the information about their stock or they jeopardise the effort put in by their fellow farmers throughout the country who see the importance of this for primary industry,” says Hutchings.
OSPRI is working on ways to make it easier to meet NAIT obligations and recently launched a new way for farmers to update their NAIT account called ‘stocktake’. Using a scanner, farmers can scan all their animals (or a group of them) and upload one up to date file to the NAIT system.
There will be no change to the process for animals that are impractical to tag (ITT) say OSPRI. Farmers can continue sending these animals to a meat processor, and pay a $13 ITT levy. The current legislation around ITT animals is going to be reviewed and the process for them is likely to change in the future.