Victorian cattle producers are being reminded of the need to implement an on-farm biosecurity plan by the end of the month, if they wish to take up the voluntary Johne’s Beef Assurance Score (J-BAS) or maintain their current J-BAS.
Victoria’s chief veterinary officer Charles Milne said cattle buyers might request a Cattle Health Declaration with a J-BAS before agreeing to purchase animals, so maintaining the J-BAS would be of interest for anyone looking to buy or sell livestock.
Dr Milne said, in many cases, the on-farm biosecurity plan would help document activities already being undertaken by livestock producers.
‘‘While J-BAS is voluntary, Western Australia and Northern Territory have imposed a minimum J-BAS requirement of 8 and 6 respectively for cattle entering from Victoria, along with other conditions,’’ he said.
‘‘For a J-BAS of 6 or less, a property biosecurity plan is developed by the cattle producer, without the need for it to be overseen by a veterinary adviser.
‘‘However, for a J-BAS of 7 or 8, the plan needs to be overseen by the producer’s veterinarian.’’
Once complete the biosecurity plans remain with the producer and should be kept on hand for future reference. Plans do not need to be lodged with anyone.
To take up the voluntary J-BAS, plans need to implemented by June 30, while transitional arrangements for J-BAS end on July 1.
■For more information on biosecurity visit: www.animalhealthaustralia.com.au/what-we-do/endemic-disease/farm-biosecurity-plan/
■For more information on Johne’s disease in cattle, producers are encouraged to consult their veterinary practitioner and visit: www.animalhealthaustralia.com.au