Important information – Biosecurity plans

June 20, 2017 11:46 am

A message from ARCBA

Please find below an announcement with regard to a change to the transitional arrangements for J-BAS which end on 30 June 2017. As stated herds which do not implement a Biosecurity Plan by 30 June 2017 will revert to a J-BAS score of 6 rather than J-BAS 0. However it should be noted that all members of Livestock Production Assurance (LPA) which underpins National Vendor Declarations are required to implement a Farm Biosecurity Plan by 1 October 2017 so members are encouraged to complete, date and sign the cut down Farm Biosecurity Plan including the Johnes Disease module available from the Farm Biosecurity Website http://www.farmbiosecurity.com.au/


Do I need to send my Farm Biosecurity Plan anywhere?

You do not need to send your Farm Biosecurity Plan anywhere. It should be carefully filed so that it can be produced in either of the following situations:

  1. If you have declared on a National Cattle Health Declaration that your herd is J-BAS 6, 7 or 8, a potential purchaser could ask to see your Farm Biosecurity Plan to be assured that your Biosecurity Plan for Johnes Disease minimises the risk of infection of your herd with Johnes Disease.
  2. LPA conducts random audits. From 1 January 2018 if you are audited for LPA compliance the auditor will ask to see your Farm Biosecurity Plan.

Do I need a veterinarian to sign my Farm Biosecurity Plan which includes a Johnes module and will I have to test my herd for Johnes Disease?

  • If you decide to drop to J-BAS 6 assurance level you do not need a veterinarian to sign off on your Biosecurity Plan and you are not required to conduct any testing of your herd for Johnes Disease.
  • If you wish to maintain a J-BAS 7 assurance level you are required to have a veterinarian to sign off on your on Farm Biosecurity Plan and review it annually and you will be required to conduct the first Triennial Check Test (up to 50 animals) by 30 June 2108. Note that for a Qld herd wishing to maintain access for cattle to WA an Annual Check Test is required.
  • If you wish to maintain a J-BAS 8 assurance level (WA herds and former Market Assurance Program herds) you will be required to have a veterinarian sign your Farm Biosecurity Plan and review it annually and you will be required to conduct the first Triennial Check Test by 30 June 2018. Note that access of cattle to WA from NSW, Vic, SA and TAS requires there are additional requirements to J-BAS 8 are required. From NSW and SA two clear Sample Tests (up to 300 head) must have been conducted two years apart (equivalent to the former MN2) and from Vic and Tas three Sample Tests over four years must have been conducted (equivalent to the former MN3)

AMENDMENT TO THE CURRENT J-BAS POLICY
The Cattle Council of Australia Board has made an amendment to the current policy regarding the 1 July 2017 J-BAS changeover, following a high degree of concern for store sales scheduled for early July onwards as well as the need to help large numbers of producers get a biosecurity plan in place.

The amendment is that herds with a transition score of J-BAS 7 or 8 will revert to a J-BAS 6 rather than J-BAS 0, if no on-farm biosecurity plan is in place by 1 July 2017. The focus remains the same – cattle producers across Australia are urged to implement an on-farm biosecurity plan, and are encouraged to treat JD as one of the many diseases they must manage within their business.

Below is a media release related to this amendment.


UPDATED FARM BIOSECURITY PLAN PAGE

With recent changes to JD management and LPA accreditation the spotlight has been on biosecurity planning for the past few weeks.

To assist producers with creating and implementing documented biosecurity plans to meet these new requirements, AHA has updated its Farm Biosecurity Plan page to include a range of information and resources regarding biosecurity planning. Feel free to share this page far and wide! Also, if there is any other information you would like included on this page just let me know.


MEDIA RELEASE
14 June 2017

Biosecurity focus the way of the future for livestock producers

The voluntary Johne’s Beef Assurance Score (J-BAS) has been developed to assist beef cattle producers in identifying the risk of Johne’s disease (JD) occurring in a herd.

Transitional arrangements for J-BAS end on 1 July 2017 and cattle producers across Australia are urged to implement an on-farm biosecurity plan in order to maintain their current J-BAS. J-BAS is managed by Animal Health Australia (AHA) on behalf of the Cattle Council of Australia (CCA), who represent the industry.

In an important update for producers, herds with a transition score of J-BAS 7 or 8 will revert to a J-BAS 6 rather than J-BAS 0, if no on-farm biosecurity plan is in place by 1 July 2017.

“CCA have taken on-board feedback and altered the J-BAS score to alleviate producer concerns regarding loss of domestic market sales. This doesn’t change the focus of the new direction – cattle producers are still encouraged to treat JD as one of the many diseases they must manage within their business,” says Dr Rob Barwell, Acting Executive Manager Biosecurity and Product Integrity Services at AHA.

“We’d like to acknowledge all livestock stakeholders, including agents, for their excellent work in spreading the on-farm biosecurity message to Australian cattle producers – a message we’re keen for all invested parties to continue sharing.

“It’s important to remember that key to this new framework is the implementation of robust biosecurity practices; practices which will safeguard the profitability of the cattle producer,” says Dr Barwell.

To assist producers with developing their biosecurity plans, AHA has updated its Farm Biosecurity Plan page to include a range of biosecurity planning resources. The same on-farm planning template can be used for the Livestock Production Assurance program and J-BAS, with producers who have a JD focus required to complete the optional JD questions.

As the Australian cattle industry finalises the transition to a new framework for managing JD, producers are encouraged to implement their on-farm biosecurity plans.

– ENDS –


If you have any questions on this complex and confusing issue please don’t hesitate to call Alex McDonald, ARCBA BJD rep on Ph 0412 811123.

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