Stock theft on agenda for sheep industry

30 Nov, 2011 02:00 AM
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Garry Hine (left) and Tony Gooch at a previous Sheep Industry Consultative Group meeting.
Garry Hine (left) and Tony Gooch at a previous Sheep Industry Consultative Group meeting.

THE Sheep Industry Consultative Group held its half yearly meeting last Monday, and while attendance from farmers was disappointing a range of issues were discussed.

WAFarmers representative Tony Gooch said while numbers were down, there was a strong representation from members of the Department of Agriculture and Food (DAFWA) and other appropriate industry representatives.

"Rob Egerton-Warburton spoke on the future of the Sheep Industry Leadership Council and outlined what he thought its role entailed, and discussed the leadership council's objectives," Mr Gooch said.

"The sheep identification system was another topic that came up and the issue of whether or not an electronic system was needed was debated on.

"Most people in attendance decided that the current system was working well and were of the belief that no change was needed."

One of the most interesting debates was on the topic of stock theft, and the relationship between police and the DAFWA's Animal Welfare and Livestock Compliance Unit.

Mr Gooch said many around the table thought police didn't believe they should be the first point of contact after a stock theft.

The industry representatives agreed that the issue was a police responsibility first and was then moved on to the Livestock Compliance Unit.

Footrot control and the issue of who would be in charge of policy for the footrot management committee, was expected to be discussed but did not come up.

"Currently management of footrot control overlaps, however this issue didn't come up and instead it was decided to be left until the Ovine Johne's Disease review at the end of the year," Mr Gooch said.

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