Wimmera saleyards receive funding for tagging

Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford
Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford

WIMMERA saleyards will share in more than $1.5 million in state government funding to help with the transition to mandatory electronic tagging of sheep and goats.

Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford has announced the grants, which will support Victorian saleyards transition to the new system.

Saleyards in Nhill, Horsham and Warracknabeal have been awarded the grants, to buy and install new scanning equipment and software.

Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange manager Paul Christopher said the saleyard was going through the process of getting new equipment and software so it could read electronic tags.

“We hope we will be right to have it all up and running by April 1,” he said.

“It will be a bit of work though and I’m glad some money has come through.”

Mr Christopher said with any new system, there was always going to be teething problems.

“Hopefully it is smooth sailing – we’ve done a few trials already,” he said.

“There is always issues to work through though, so hopefully in 12 months’ time, things will be working perfectly.”

Saleyards will be required to scan and upload data for all electronically tagged sheep and goats from March 31.

The funding followed the development of plans for each saleyard’s infrastructure requirements for electronic identification, following consultation with agents, transporters and saleyard staff.

“We’re proud to lead the nation in the move towards mandatory electronic tagging of sheep and goats,” Ms Pulford said. 

“We said we wouldn’t let industry absorb these changes alone – that’s why we’re supporting them to get the job done.

“Introducing this important reform to electronically tag sheep and goats protects market access for our valuable livestock industries and supports innovation and greater productivity through the supply chain.”