Record Keeping

Record Keeping

Good records and systems are the foundation of the integrity system.

How do I keep good records for NLIS?

The NLIS provides identification and traceability of livestock. Established to enhance our ability to track livestock during disease and food safety incidents, NLIS provides the information that maximises market access for Australian red meat globally.

To ensure full traceability of all livestock, their movements must be recorded in the NLIS database. The information needed to record a movement will vary according to the origin and destination of the movement, and the type of identification tags attached to the livestock.

  • Movements of livestock with electronic RFID tags are recorded using the Livestock moved onto/off my property function
  • Movements of livestock with visual tags are recorded using the Mob-based movement onto/off my property function
  • Always check movements completed by third parties such as agents, saleyards and processors checking that the total number of livestock matches the number transferred.
  • Completing a PIC reconciliation annually or every few years is a good risk management tool. PIC reconciliations are similar to property stocktakes. They identify discrepancies between the actual number of electronic devices on a property, and the number of electronic devices registered to that property (PIC) on the NLIS Database. 

PIC reconciliations are especially important if a status is applied.

Status can be assigned to properties (PICs), livestock or devices, so that animals can be traced along the supply chain, for residue testing and food safety purposes.

If transfers between PICs are not completed on the NLIS database, animals that have physically left a PIC (but have not transferred on the database) may be automatically assigned a status. 

Some statuses may result in livestock unaccepted at saleyards, feedlots and processors.  Information on PIC and device status codes is available here.

NLIS Tech Tips


Updates to the LPA website now also allow property risk assessments and farm biosecurity plans to be completed entirely digitally rather than on a printed template.

Templates for all on-farm records required by LPA are available to download and use from both the LPA and ISC websites. All records required by LPA can be uploaded to the LPA website for safe storage and easy access.

Access ISC’s step-by-step guide to creating and uploading documents on your LPA account or find out more about the new digital options available for record keeping for more information.

You must record all livestock movements onto your PIC on the NLIS database to remain LPA-accredited.

If a producer is selected to participate in an LPA audit, the auditor will review whether all transfers for livestock moved onto their PIC have been recorded on the NLIS database. 

Failure to complete NLIS transfers will be recorded as a non-conformance by the auditor and may lead to the suspension of a producer’s LPA accreditation, removing access to LPA National Vendor Declarations (NVDs).  State legislation also requires that the buyer or receiver of the livestock completes the transfer on the NLIS database. Penalties may be imposed by your state or territory government for failing to complete these transfers as required. 

Producers are required to develop a Farm Biosecurity Plan.

Updates to the LPA website now allow farm biosecurity plans to be completed entirely online rather than on a printed template.

Learn how to complete your digital farm biosecurity plan by viewing ISC’s step-by-step guide.

The timeframe for keeping records varies between LPA and the various State/Territory requirements.  Therefore, keep records for whichever is the longest period:

  • a minimum of three years (for LPA requirements)
  • in accordance with your State/Territory legislation
  • OR for the duration of the livestock on the PIC.

For all cattle, and for electronically ear-tagged sheep and goats, you can record a livestock movement on the database without an NVD/Waybill serial number. This is an optional field in the Livestock moved onto/off my property function.

Please note that, for EU-accredited cattle, failure to enter a European Union Vendor Declaration (EUVD) number will result in the animals losing their EU accreditation.

For sheep and goats with a visual tag, you will not be able to complete your mob-based movement on the database without an NVD/Waybill serial number.

Participation in the LPA program is voluntary, but to access LPA NVDs you need to be LPA accredited. LPA NVDs are required by the majority of processors and saleyards, so if you intend to sell your livestock via these channels you will need to be part of LPA and keep the necessary records.   

If you choose not to be part of LPA you will need to comply with the movement documentation requirements for your state or territory that are accepted in place of an LPA NVD.  

NLIS is legislated in all States and Territories meaning all livestock movements must be recorded on the NLIS database, regardless of the size of your property or the number of animals on the property.  These movement records are stored on the NLIS database.  It is recommended but not compulsory, to have an NLIS account.  NLIS accounts are free.  Having an NLIS account allows you to check that transfers have been completed correctly and complete PIC reconciliations.