LAA Chairman calls for national cattle database

25th February 2013

The Chairman of the Livestock Auctioneers Association has called for the introduction of a national cattle database, to record the health status of animals in the UK.

Robert Addison told a group of fellow auctioneers and representatives of the livestock industry at a meeting in London on Thursday that a database would give the immediate health status of cattle being sold through auction marts.

"Such a system would add to transparency surrounding the health status of animals going through the markets and would also help to promote the health and wellbeing of stock being sold," he said.

"It would be of great benefit to anyone involved in the buying and selling of livestock, but would also be immensely helpful in the implementation of disease control policies," he said.

Chris Dodds, Executive Secretary of the LAA, said auctioneers were keen to get involved in such a scheme that would enable markets to give accurate and current animal health status at the time of sale.

"Auctioneers have a key role to play in this, but we need the tools to do it. A national database, which could be accessed only with the consent of the vendor, would help the industry as a whole keep track of diseases such as bovine TB, BVD, IBR and leptospirosis.

"It would be a valuable marketing tool for the vendor, and give buyers extra confidence that they are bidding for healthy animals," he said.

"A database would provide a trustworthy source of information, be beneficial to welfare and add to the traceability of animals being sold. The LAA is keen to help lead the field in bringing the industry together to deliver this," he said.