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Episode 33 - Foot and Mouth

You would have to be living off the grid to have not heard the term Foot and Mouth in the last week. What is it? Why do we care? How come it’s suddenly become such a hot topic in Australia. We export about 70 per cent of our agricultural produce in this country. A lethal livestock disease threatens to shut down that market for years with disastrous results for farmers and indeed all of us with price hikes and a shortage of meat inevitable. Biosecurity is increasingly important. It comes down to what each one of us does when we return from overseas. FMD doesn’t make humans sick but we can pass on this illness to animals. To learn more about how we can protect ourselves is the Independent Chair of the SafeMeat Advisory Group, Andrew Henderson.

  • Andrew explains Foot and Mouth Disease as a lethal livestock illness (cattle, sheep, goats and pigs) and explains what this disease does.

  • In the 1980’s there was a Foot and Mouth outbreak in Indonesia. Andrew shares the differences in these two occurrences in association with trade partnerships and tourism.

  • The economic impact and, what is at stake if we can’t keep this disease offshore.

  • Andrew shares how we can bolster our biosecurity systems.

  • The industry exports 70% of what it produces and the disruption Foot and Mouth would cause to that supply chain.

  • The COVID pandemic gave us all an appreciation for biosecurity and the correlations to Foot and Mouth.

  • The importance of traceability through SafeMeat and the work of this organisation.

  • The National Livestock Identification System is the contact-tracing system for our livestock.

  • Andrew’s tips for how the average person can help with containment of Foot and Mouth.

We hope to see you back on the road soon, to learn more about how Australia grows on the next episode of Australian Farmers with Angie Asimus.



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