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Livestock tracing bill passes first reading

Hon David Carter Minister for Biosecurity

14 December 2010

Media Statement

Livestock tracing bill passes first reading

Biosecurity Minister David Carter tonight welcomed the unanimous support of Parliament for the first reading of the National Animal Identification and Tracing (NAIT) Bill.

The bill sets out the legal framework for the collection of information on livestock, their location and movement history throughout their lifetime. It also outlines governance arrangements and powers for the NAIT organisation.

"The NAIT scheme will protect farmers in the international marketplace and strengthen our already excellent biosecurity system," Biosecurity Minister David Carter said in introducing the bill.

"With other agricultural producing nations increasingly moving to mandatory computerised tracing of individual animals, New Zealand cannot afford to lag behind."

The scheme would see animals tagged with radio frequency identification devices, people in charge of animals and their location registered, and reports logged when NAIT animals moved locations.

Mr Carter tonight paid tribute to the work of livestock and animal products industries in helping develop the NAIT scheme.

"NAIT is a partnership between industry and the Crown which started in 2004 in recognition of the growing need for better animal identification and tracing systems. Key primary sector industries are fully supportive of the scheme."

The Bill has been referred to the Primary Production Select Committee.

ENDS

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