Australian Pork Newspaper
P. 1

Phone: 07 4697 3344 • Fax 07 4697 3532
Vol 24. No. 4 April 2020 Australian Pork Newspaper PO Box 387 Cleveland 4163 Phone (07) 3286 1833 Fax (07) 3821 2637 Email
Biosecurity vigilance to stop African swine fever spread to Australia
Pork supply secure, call to support foodservice trade
Point of View
THE Australian Pork Limited team is tak- ing the lead on several fronts in response to the rapidly evolving impact of COVID-19.
have purchased pork to eat at home.
APL is committed to ensuring Australian pig producers and the wider pork industry are able to respond strongly to the unfolding situation.
A great eating experi- ence is always impor- tant, especially for those who don’t regularly pre- pare pork meals in their own kitchen.
As an industry, our pri- orities are to protect the health and safety of our staff and customers, and to ensure a consistent supply of high-quality and nutritious Austral- ian pork.
industry remains opera- tional to maintain sup- ply to consumers and uphold the wellbeing of the animals in care.
keep their businesses operating.
Meanwhile, the food- service trade, which rep- resents about 25 percent of our sales, has been brought to a devastating standstill by the isola- tion measures designed to limit the spread of the virus.
We are encouraged by assurances from federal and state jurisdictions that agricultural supply chains are recognised as essential services and will remain operational during any shutdown periods.
As a member of NFF, APL and our produc- ers are being strongly represented at sev- eral high-level Federal Government working groups, convened by the Prime Minister, relevant Ministers and Common- wealth departments.
Now more than ever it is so important consum- ers look to buy Austral- ian pork, ham and bacon to support the 35,000 people employed across the country in the in- dustry, representing the livelihoods of thousands of Australian families in regional communities.
I encourage all of us – we are all consumers – to support foodservice businesses, which re- main operational during this critical time.
Nonetheless, we will maintain a vigilant watch on anything that may compromise pro- ducer and processor op- erations.
Home delivery ser- vices are a great way to support the restaurants that support our indus- try, even if you’re eating at home.
APL is working close- ly with the National Farmers’ Federation and directly with the Federal Government to guaran- tee the movement of ani- mals, product and farm inputs across the coun- try, including across state borders.
This engagement has been strengthened by Minister David Little- proud’s appointment of former Deputy Secre- tary of the Department of Agriculture Mark Tucker as the key liai- son between the depart- ment and industry, to help ensure agricultural production and supply chains are maintained throughout the COV- ID-19 response.
Pork will continue to be a major source of protein for Australians in the coming weeks and months and produc- ers are well placed to meet increased demand for affordable and ver- satile Australian pork at supermarkets and butch- ers.
Producers are encour- aged to consider how the range of Federal Gov- ernment support meas- ures may apply to their businesses.
APL is also in regular contact with state-based pork groups to com- municate updates on national initiatives and receive valuable local feedback to help guide ongoing APL priorities, including maintaining access to a wide range of markets.
This guide and other ongoing updates are available via australian
Accordingly, A PL’s Marketing team has commenced work to promote recipes and ideas for consumers who
From an on-property perspective, APL has also developed a guide for producers to man- age the risks posed by COVID-19.
State-based represent- ative groups are work- ing closely with their respective state gov- ernment to ensure the
Australian processors have a combined week- ly throughput of about 100,000 pigs.
Fresh pork plays a sig- nificant role in meeting our national food needs – on average each Aus- tralian eats more than 10kg of fresh, locally produced pork every year.
They are doing every- thing possible to uphold employee wellbeing to
AUSTRALIAN pork producers remain on alert following confir- mation in the last week of March that the deadly African swine fever vi- rus caused the deaths of hundreds of pigs in Papua New Guinea.
“The potential national economic impact from an ASF incursion in Austral- ia is estimated to be more than $2 billion.
come the Federal Govern- ment’s offer to assist PNG to contain the virus.
PNG officials, who con- firmed samples from the affected Southern High- lands pigs were sent to Australia and returned positive for ASF, are in- vestigating how the virus spread to the region, in- cluding the possibility of transmission via imported canned food.
“There is no cure for ASF and millions of Aus- tralian pigs would be at risk if the disease reached our country.
“Even with current trav- el restrictions, there is no room for complacency in terms of ASF, particularly given international postal services remain opera- tional.
Australian Pork Limited CEO Margo Andrae said the detection of ASF in PNG reinforced the impor- tance of ongoing ASF miti- gation work between the pork industry, government and other stakeholders.
Ms Andrae said ASF represented potentially the biggest animal dis- ease event the world has ever seen, having already killed hundreds of mil- lions of pigs across Asia and Europe.
“Biosecurity measures in the Torres Strait have been strengthened as a re- sult of COVID-19 and the government is reviewing those measures to reflect the risk ASF in PNG pos- es to Australia.”
“While ASF does not pose human health risks, the deadly virus would absolutely devastate Aus- tralia’s pork industry if it arrived here,” she said.
“ASF has been con- firmed in PNG, Indone- sia and Timor Leste, and we are concerned of its potential spread to the Pa- cific region.
Confirmation of ASF in PNG coincides with the Inspector-General of Biosecurity’s release of the updated report on the adequacy of preventative border measures to miti- gate the risk of ASF.
The report on the adequacy of preventative border measures to mitigate the risk of ASF is available at
The IGB report is avail- able at default/files/documents/ asf-review-report.pdf
“That would devastate pork producers and Aus- tralian fresh pork sup- plies, and seriously jeop- ardise the wellbeing of the 36,000 Australians em- ployed in our industry.”
“That is why the instal- lation of two new 3D x-ray machines at the Sydney and Melbourne mail cen- tres, as part of the gov- ernment’s $66.6 million ASF-response package, is such an important part of our defence.
“The battle is being fought across internation- al borders and we wel-
“A timely recommenda- tion in the report is the inclusion of additional criteria in risk assessment for flights from ASF-af- fected countries, includ- ing a focus on seasonal farm workers,” Ms An- drae said.
“We cannot afford any weak links in our defence against ASF.
“All aspects of moni- toring at the border are critical, as is the work by producers to strengthen on-farm biosecurity and the cross-agency col- laboration being led by National Feral Pig Man- agement Coordinator Dr Heather Channon.”
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07 4697 3344

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