Australia is lucky to be free of many of the diseases that threaten the pork industry overseas. Australian pork is regarded as a premium product in domestic and international markets, revered for its safe, clean and green attributes. This valuable export market relies on our herd remaining disease-free, so we need effective bio-security measures in place to maintain consumer confidence in Australian pork.
To help protect our industry, PigPass was developed. PigPass is a tracking system used to track the movement of all pigs in Australia. Through this system a clear picture of all pig movements is known. This is extremely important in the event of a disease outbreak or food safety emergency. PigPass also provides assurance to consumers of the safety, integrity and traceability of pork products. Buyers and processors rely on this information to ensure only the safest food enters the supply chain.
PigPass is designed to link pigs to a property of origin using a Property Identification Code (PIC), registered pig identification (ear tags and tattoos), and pig movement documentation (the PigPass NVD).
Whether you have one pig, 20 pigs, a pet pig or a Christmas pig – you must register with PigPass.
PigPass helps to ensure that the transport of pigs meets agreed industry and government standards relating to food safety, animal disease control and animal welfare. Don’t wait until 1 February – register with PigPass – start recording movements now to protect your pigs and be ready to meet your obligations.
PigPass is designed to protect the Australian pork industry which employs more than 36,000 people in Australia and contributes approximately A$5.2 billion in gross domestic product to the Australian economy.
Using PigPass is quick, easy and FREE. The PigPass NVD is a form you complete online. Alternatively, you can purchase PigPass NVD book via the PigPass portal.
To complete a PigPass NVD, you must first register with PigPass. Have your PIC details and pig tattoo number handy. Once you have completed your registration, it will need to be activated. Please allow two business days for this to occur. When the account is active you can create a PigPass NVD online. This is completely free and can be made up to five days ahead of time. Alternatively, you can purchase a PigPass NVD book online.
Pigs require a PigPass every time they are transported. Hand two copies to the person transporting the pigs, one of which is retained by the transporter. The other is given by the transporter to the receiver of the pigs, including shows and events, abattoirs, schools, knackeries, producers, pet pig owners, export depots and livestock agents. A pig may have a number of different types of journeys and several parts to that journey. For example,
- Property to saleyard – vendor completes PigPass NVD > vendor provide PigPass NVD to transporter > transporter provides a copy to saleyards > saleyard provides copy to purchaser > saleyard reports the movement to the PigPass database.
- Property to property – vendor completes PigPass NVD > vendor provide PigPass NVD to transporter > transporter provides a copy to purchaser > purchaser reports the movement to the PigPass database.
- Property to abattoir – owner completes PigPass NVD > owner provide PigPass NVD to transporter > transporter provides a copy to the abattoir (or the owner carries the PigPass NVD if transporting themselves) > abattoir reports the movement to the PigPass database.
When you receive pigs, you must ensure they have a PigPass NVD and you must report the movement of the pigs on your Property Identification Code (PIC) online using the originating sender’s serial number which can be found on the PigPass NVD.
In Australia, all pigs must be identified NLIS approved ear tags or brands/tattoos before being moved from your PIC. This applies to movements to another property where a change of ownership takes place, to saleyards, to abattoirs and to shows or events.
In Australia, pig breeder devices must be yellow and post-breeder devices must be orange. As with all NLIS accredited devices please ensure the correct applicator is used when applying these devices. If in doubt, please contact the manufacturer directly to clarify which applicator should be used in conjunction with each device.
Australian Pork Ltd expects that producers using tattoos will continue to do so. However, visual ear tags are now approved as an alternative for producers who do not use a tattoo. Producers should always consider the welfare of the pig when choosing an appropriate ear tag. Apply the tag just before you want to move the pigs to minimise time in which tags can be lost. It is recommended that a tattoo/brand is used to identify pigs over 25kg. The main reason that brands are preferred over ear tags is that they are able to be read from the carcass of a pig.
The requirements for using ear tags for pigs must comply with the NLIS Pigs Standards as approved by Agriculture Ministers on 26 July 2017. As required by state and territory legislation, NLIS Ltd has approved the use of four visual ear tags. The NLIS brochure outlining the ear tags and contact information to order tags can be downloaded here.
The tags must be printed with the NLIS logo, the letter “P” in a circle, and the Property Identification Code (PIC). A yellow tag (see example below) must be applied to pigs on their property of birth – this is known as a “breeder tag”. An orange tag (see example below) is to be applied to a pig that has moved and is no longer on the property of birth – this is known as a “post breeder tag”.
To order tags or brands visit 4tags.com/pig tags
Brands are applied to pigs using a “slap brand”. This is a striker dipped in a carbon based ink, and leaving the tattoo or impression of the brand on the pig. For this reason, brands are often referred to as “tattoos” or “tattoo numbers”. It is best to brand pigs just before they are due to be moved.
Branding is done so that pigs can be linked back to the property that they came from. The PigPass system records which brand(s) are being used on each property, as well as each mob of pigs being moved. In many cases properties use more than one brand, but these brands are all linked back to that property.
In Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, and Western Australia your brand number will be issued to you by the relevant state authority (usually the DPI). In NSW, you must register your brand number, which is the last six digits of your PIC, with Local Land Services. More information can be found on the Pig Pass Identification website.
To order tags or brands visit 4tags.com/pig tags Any questions simply email or call 1300 813 500