Disease halts live cattle imports from Down Under

Live cattle import from four Australian facilities were suspended after 13 live cattle infected with lumpy skin disease (LSD) were found said officials.

LSD, a highly contagious disease found in cattle that causes blisters and reduces milk production, was found in imported live cattle from four of 60 Australian facilities allowed to export to Indonesia.

The animals were quarantined before arriving at Tanjung Priok port in Jakarta, as per import regulations, when LSD was detected, said Bambang, head of Indonesia’s Agricultural Quarantine Agency, who goes by a single name.

Some of the live cattle showed physical symptoms of the disease as well.

The office of Australia’s Chief Veterinary Officer released a statement saying that the country remains free of LSD and has “never had a positive detection on our shores.”

The Australian Agriculture Ministry on Monday said they are working with their Indonesian counterpart to make sure Australian cattle comply with all Indonesian requirements.

Indonesia is the largest market for Australian live cattle exports.

In 2022, more than 303,000 live cattle were imported from Australia to Indonesia and more than 153,000 from January to July 2023.

The import of live cattle from the four facilities will be stopped for the next 60 days as they undergo an investigation.

More attention will be paid to other facilities within 60km, according to Australia’s vet officer.

If LSD is not found, the live cattle import will resume.

Bambang stressed that “joint control measures” are vital to control the spreading of the disease. — AP

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