A NEW National Wool Declaration (NWD) which comes into effect on January 1, 2022, will require woolgrowers or their managers to declare if sheep were mulesed using liquid nitrogen and with or without pain relief.
Woolgrowers and managers will have five choices on the new NWD to declare the mulesing status of each mob shorn.
The previous NM (no sheep in the mob have been mulesed), AA (sheep have been mulesed and treated with an approved anaesthetic or analgesic product) and M (sheep have been mulesed without anaesthetic or analgesic) mob status categories will be retained.
They will be joined by new categories of LA (sheep treated with liquid nitrogen and an analgesic product approved by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority) and LN (sheep treated with liquid nitrogen but without use of an approved analgesic).
The new NWD will also ask growers or managers two property status questions which will cover the previous CM (ceased mulesing) mob status.
They will be required to circle a yes or no answer to the question, "Have any lambs born on this property been mulesed in the last 12 months?"
Similarly, they will be asked, "Have any mulesed (or AA) ewes/wethers been purchased in the past 12 months?"
Explanatory notes with the new NWD include the definition of treated with liquid nitrogen as "the application of liquid nitrogen where ultra-low temperatures are used to degenerate tissue and result in the removal of skin from the breech and/or tail of a sheep".
The new NWD also asks growers and managers to declare whether mobs being shorn have had "contact" with wool-shedding breeds.
Its explanatory notes describe "contact" as, "mated to, or run together since the previous shearing, with shedding breed sheep or their crosses (includes lambs from shedding breed sheep or their crosses)".
It lists examples of shedding breeds as Afrikaner, Australian White, Awassi, Damara, Black Headed and White Dorper, Karakul, Meatmaster, Persian, Van Rooy, Wiltipoll and Wiltshire Horn.
Woolclassers are responsible for filling out the wool specifications, bale numbers range for each mob and mob numbers for all lines of wool.
Woolgrowers or their managers are responsible for filling in the mob status declarations and answering the property status questions on ceased mulesing and are required to sign and date the NWD before it is valid.
The property owner or manager signing the declaration is responsible for its accuracy.
Australian Wool Exchange (AWEX) chief executive office Mark Grave said the new NWD was created after a review with the focus on "identification of wool from sheep treated with liquid nitrogen".
"This review was complex and the AWEX board appreciates the frank feedback received from the organisations and individuals who contributed to this review," Mr Grave said.
"In finalising the 2021 NWD review, the AWEX board is announcing that the next review will be conducted within two years and it will consider the potential of removing CM (ceased mulesing).
"This time-frame will allow stakeholders ample opportunity to consider the future of CM," he said.
All woolgrowers or managers and wool classers completing an NWD must use the new version from January 1.