Investment from the government is through the $17 million Sheep and Goat Transition fund.
The aim of the fund is to help Victoria’s sheep industry implement electronic identification along the supply chain to provide consumers with a lifetime traceability guarantee.
“This welcomed investment will ensure eID tags in 2018 are available at a subsidised rate of 45 cents”, said VFF Livestock President Leonard Vallance.
This price is further supported by the Victorian Government’s innovative tag tender system providing an advantage to Victorian livestock producers not available in any other state.
The VFF has advocated for no change to on farm management practices during the roll out of the system and as a result the subsidy will extend to all tag colours for 2018 as opposed to the ‘year by colour’ subsidy in 2017.
“I received numerous calls from farmers telling me they don’t use ‘year by colour’ as a management practise so I took that directly to the Minister’s office and I thank Minister Pulford for listening”, Mr Vallance said.
Mr Vallance said Victorian sheep farmers had accepted the challenge of implementing the new system with 10 million tags sold to date displaying the progressive mindset of the industry.
“It’s pleasing to see farmers and the processing sector on track with implementation and we look forward to seeing the saleyards come on line in the New Year”.
The VFF continues to consult with Agriculture Victoria, State Government and sheep producers to ensure the introduction of the electronic identification system doesn’t burden farmers.
Mr Vallance said, “We’re working towards a cost efficient data transfer system to safeguard farmers from the associated cost with the NLIS”.