Electronic ID scanning delay in WA backed by ALMA for uniform implementation

Headshot of Aidan Smith
Aidan SmithCountryman
Sheep yarded at the Katanning Regional Saleyards.
Camera IconSheep yarded at the Katanning Regional Saleyards. Credit: Zach Relph/Countryman

Industry support for delaying the introduction of electronic ID tag scanning for sheep and goats at saleyards has picked up after the Australian Livestock Markets Association got behind the move by WA to push it out six months.

ALMA president Ken Rogers said the organisation supported State Agriculture Minister Jackie Jarvis’ decision to defer the introduction from January 1, 2025 to July 1, 2025, and requested other States follow suit to ensure a uniform implementation across the country.

“This deferment allows further time to realise a more cost effective and efficient model for the saleyard industry,” Mr Rogers said.

Australian Livestock Markets Association president Ken Rogers.
Camera IconAustralian Livestock Markets Association president Ken Rogers. Credit: Kylie Svensson/supplied

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“Minister Jarvis has listened to the sheep industry and responded in a practical and sympathetic manner,” Mr Rogers said.

“We now urge all the other States to follow this lead and show an understanding of the current issues facing the saleyard and broader sheep and goat industry.”

ALMA has called on the Queensland, New South Wales, South Australian and Tasmanian State governments to also recognise the significant pressures producers, livestock agents and saleyards were facing and defer eiD scanning in saleyards until July 1, 2025.

Ms Jarvis said the changes were in response to “firsthand feedback I’ve received from the WA Sheep and Goat Advisory Committee and a number of sheep producers.”

Katanning saleyards manager Rod Bushell.
Camera IconKatanning saleyards manager Rod Bushell. Credit: Shannon Verhagen/Countryman

Katannning saleyards manager Rod Bushell said it was a good decision to push the implementation date back six months because the company contracted to install the new scanners at the yards were based in the Eastern States and had to install systems in NSW, South Australia and WA.

“The work involved is not simple and there’s too much work to be done to have it completed by the deadline,” Mr Bushell said.

“It’s a pretty big job and was always going to be a tight time line.”

He said operations during the sale days at the yards could be a bit tricky during the installation but they would do their best to continue as normal.

Mr Bushell said while there had been some industry opposition to mandatory eID for sheep and goats across the country it would be good for the industry in the case of a foot and mouth disease outbreak, in terms of traceability.

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