Timely LPA tips for producers

17 December 2019

Red meat producers selected for audits under Australia’s Livestock Production Assurance (LPA) program are being reminded to review on-farm practices and adequately prepare for audits to avoid common non-conformances.

The LPA program is the Australian livestock industry’s on-farm assurance program that underpins market access for Australian red meat, managed by Integrity Systems Company (ISC).

On-farm audits are conducted across Australia each year to ensure the management systems implemented by livestock producers are complying with LPA rules and standards.

All LPA accredited producers can be audited with approximately 2000 random audits conducted each year. When selected for an audit, producers receive an LPA Audit Notification Pack containing information to help prepare They are then contacted by an auditor to arrange a time for the audit to take place.

Feedback from the qualified AUS-MEAT auditors who conduct the on-farm audits for the LPA program shows most common non-conformances include inadequate record keeping of chemical use, livestock treatments, and fodder purchases; inadequate or no biosecurity plan; and livestock access to possible contaminants such as machinery, contaminated sites and lead paint on old buildings.

Review on-farm practices

ISC Chief Executive Officer Dr Jane Weatherley said producers should review on-farm practices against the audit checklist included in the LPA Audit Notification Pack to ensure their operation is up to date and identify any areas that may need attention before the audit.

An audit checklist to assist producers to prepare for audits is available here.

“Most importantly, producers should maintain awareness of all possible sources of persistent chemicals or physical contaminants that livestock might have access to, including batteries, oil, paint and fertiliser,” Dr Weatherley said. “By completing a property risk assessment, documenting and managing known risks, producers demonstrate they are managing their livestock to ensure chemical contamination does not occur.”

“Livestock access to dumps, old machinery, dog or chook food, which may contain restricted animal materials (RAM), are also areas for concern and should be stored separately and securely from livestock feed.”

Under LPA, producers are required to keep a record of all animal treatments, and update this record every time an animal is treated with veterinary chemicals. This includes recording the batch number and expiry date of the chemical that was used.

Templates for recording this required information are available here.

LPA reaccreditation reminder

LPA accredited producers are also reminded they have until October 2020 to renew their accreditation.  Rather than waiting until they are notified that their accreditation is due, LPA accredited producers can go online and renew their accreditation at any time.

By logging onto the LPA Service Centre, producers can check renewal requirements and ensure they know what their responsibilities are under the LPA program.

To maintain LPA program accreditation, producers need to ensure they understand and are complying with LPA’s seven core requirements: property risk assessments; safe and responsible animal treatments; stock foods, fodder crops, grain and pasture treatments; preparation for dispatch of livestock; livestock transactions and movements; biosecurity; and animal welfare.

To reaccredit, producers must successfully complete an assessment, accessed via the LPA Service Centre, and complete the LPA declaration.  As part of the Accelerated Adoption Initiative, the LPA accreditation fee (normally $66) is $0 until 30 June2021.

To renew your LPA accreditation, check when it’s due for renewal, or to complete the LPA learning modules, log onto the LPA Service Centre.

Information explaining the LPA reaccreditation process can be accessed here.