AN information session on foot and mouth disease (FMD) has been added to the agenda of the annual WAFarmers' dairy conference in Busselton this Thursday, July 21.
Jointly organised by WAFarmers dairy council and Western Dairy - which hosts a business breakfast before the conference - the session will include speakers who have had first-hand experience with FMD overseas.
They will include Michael Rose, cattle genetics and technical adviser with Bunbury herd improvement specialist FarmWest and Dario Nandapi, from Smart Cow Consulting, Binningup.
Both travelled to Nepal in 2018 during an endemic FMD outbreak as part of an industry preparedness program where they learned to recognise FMD, to age lesions, take samples for laboratory diagnosis and carry out effective biosecurity procedures to prevent FMD returning with them to Australia.
Former livestock security veterinary officer with the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) and livestock production consultant Jeisane Accioly and DPIRD manager livestock identification and traceability Beth Green will speak on importance of proactive biosecurity by all stakeholders and what can be done to improve rapid response if required.
Ashlee Hammond, Dairy Australia's issues manager and stakeholder engagement officer, and Craig Hough, Australian Dairy Farmers' director strategy and policy, will update dairy farmers on industry activities for FMD preparedness and advocacy to government on actions to prevent a local outbreak.
The one-hour session from 2.40pm at Abbey Beach Resort was rapidly arranged last week and added to the dairy conference agenda on Monday in response to the FMD outbreak in Indonesia and risk Western Australians holidaying in Bali could bring it back with them if they failed to follow biosecurity protocols.
Western Dairy regional manager Julianne Hill said the information session aimed to inform dairy farmers - whose herds are most at risk if there is a local outbreak - what was being done to protect the industry and what they could do to protect their own farms.
Ms Hill asked anyone who was not already attending the breakfast or conference, but wished to attend the FMD information session, to contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 0447 261 607 or WAFarmers dairy council executive officer Laura Stocker at email@example.com before attending.
This Friday, July 22, Dairy Australia is hosting a national FMD webinar from 10am to inform farmers what is being done to prevent a FMD incursion in Australia and what they can do to increase biosecurity measures onfarm.
Speakers will include Chris Parker, head of the National Animal Disease Taskforce, Federal Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Stephanie Bullen, national animal health and fertility lead, Dairy Australia and Justin Toohey, advisor on animal health, welfare and biosecurity, Australian Dairy Farmers.
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