An increasing number of markets will not accept beef or beef products that are treated with hormonal growth promotants (HGPs). With demand for HGP-free beef increasing significantly in recent years, in both domestic and international markets, Australian producers are reminded they must use HGPs responsibly to protect our market access.
Have a registered PIC - to purchase HGPs from an authorised seller, you must have a Property Identification Code (PIC).
At the time of purchase, complete an HGP purchaser declaration form and provide it to the supplier - Your supplier should have copies of this form or you can access it on the APVMA website. This form includes details about you, the HGP supplier, which HGP products will be implanted into which cattle, and the details of the property where the cattle will be implanted.
Use HGP products according to the label directions - Approved guidelines for use of HGP products are prominent on the label. Follow these guidelines which can include information on dosage, application, withholding periods and more.
Identify HGP-treated cattle with a triangular ear punch mark - The prescribed ear punch mark shall be in the form of an equal sided triangle with sides of 20 millimetres; applied so as to leave a space on all sides within the margin of the right ear.
If an animal has previously been treated with HGPs and has been ear punched with the prescribed mark, there is no requirement to again identify the animal with this mark.
Only the approved ear punch available from authorised retailers of HGPs may be used to apply this prescribed earmark.
Keep a record each time an animal is treated with HGPs - This includes date of treatment; description, location and number of livestock treated; details of the product used (including trade name, batch number and dose).
Keeping records and identifying treated cattle with a triangular ear punch mark are legal requirements in all states and territories, and are requirements of the Livestock Production Assurance (LPA) program.
Declare animals treated with HGPs on the National Vendor Declaration (NVD) form - Tick ‘Yes’ for Question 1 on the NVD (i.e. Have any of the cattle in this consignment ever in their lives been treated with a hormonal growth promotant (HGP)?)
It is an offence to represent HGP-treated cattle as being untreated and doing so can result in a penalty.
If you are unsure whether cattle have ever in their lifetime been treated with HGPs, tick ‘Yes’ on the NVD.
NVDs are a legal document that are key to Australian beef’s traceability and market access. It is an offence to represent HGP-treated cattle as being untreated. Doing so can result in commercial penalties from processors, or prosecution.
It is important that everyone who completes NVDs or administers HGP products know and abides by these rules.