Northern Territory Movement Restrictions

Northern Territory Movement Restrictions
Bim Struss, AgForce Cattle President

NT Movement Restrictions Fact sheet

In July 2016, a new national approach to Johne’s disease in cattle was established across Australia that saw the state-based biosecurity zones dismantled to enable producers to individually manage on-farm risk without fear of the stigma attached to quarantine.

While JD is still a notifiable disease, most states removed regulations, including here in Queensland, and Animal Health Australia developed a Johne’s Beef Assurance Score (J-BAS) as a risk profiling tool for cattle producers.

While the new approach opened up trade across Australia and reduced regulations, some states are looking to manage JD risk by imposing access requirements.

In trying to protect their JD free status, Western Australia used the J-BAS system to restrict entry of cattle unless they have the highest possible J-BAS score, regular herd tests and a vet agreed biosecurity plan in place.

To export via the Northern Territory, a Cattle Health Declaration, a biosecurity plan and a NT Health Certificate & Waybill signed off by an authorised biosecurity officer is needed.

With nearly a third of the live export cattle going out of the Darwin Port coming from Queensland, AgForce strongly encourages all producers sending cattle through the Northern Territory to put in place a biosecurity plan.

AgForce is working with the Northern Territory Government to reduce these requirements but producers who move cattle to the NT need to be aware of and actively preparing for the change in movement protocols which take effect from 1 July 2017.

AgForce is currently preparing a biosecurity check list to meet the market access requirements NT and WA have put in place, and we will be at the Yelvertoft Mount Isa Campdraft over the Easter weekend to talk to Northern producers about what the changes mean for them.

In addition, AgForce will join with Livestock Biosecurity Network and Future Beef to hold biosecurity planning workshops in Winton on 2 May and Cloncurry on 4 May.

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