CRISIS response processes and emergency meetings are being activated in view of the risk to Australia's cattle industry from lumpy skin disease.
The Red Meat Advisory Council chair John McKillop said the industry's crisis response, known as CRIMAC, was now in place.
Meanwhile the Queensland Government has met with industry leaders and other stakeholders in Brisbane to address the risk.
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An agreed CRIMAC action has been to form a high-level cross-industry taskforce to ensure coordination and collaboration across all affected industry sectors.
The taskforce is comprised of senior representatives of RMAC, National Farmers' Federation, Australian Dairy Farmers' and the respective industry service providers.
The Red Meat Advisory Council independent Chair John McKillop said "the red meat and livestock industry activated its crisis response process, or CRIMAC, in view of the significant risk posed by the declared presence of Lumpy Skin Disease in Sumatra, Indonesia.
"The taskforce's membership ensures the requisite skills, while remaining sufficiently high level and effective, with technical or operational activities to be undertaken by committees as determined by the taskforce," Mr McKillop said.
The key objectives are to:
In its first meeting, the taskforce agreed on the formation of the following four skills-based committees:
"The formation of these committees is underway, with the committee composition to ensure broad industry representation and skills from State Farming Organisations, Peak Industry Councils and your department, as appropriate." said Mr McKillop
Meanwhile, Queensland's Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said while the disease had been confirmed in livestock in Indonesia there was no sign of it in Australia.
"We are working hard in co-ordination with the federal government, other states and territories, industry and veterinarians to have measures in place to manage the risks," Mr Furner said.
"Lumpy skin disease is a highly infectious skin disease of cattle and water buffalo, which is transmitted by biting insects.
"Cattle with this disease can develop large skin growths over much of their body, which makes the animal very unwell and sometimes leads to death.
"The disease impacts production through emaciation, decreased milk production, damaged hides, and reproductive losses, and it could jeopardise our market access. Animals that recover can remain in extremely poor condition for some time.
"Australia is free of the disease. We want to keep it that way."
He said beef and dairy producers need to be aware of the signs of the disease, and immediately report anything suspicious to Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23 or the Emergency Animal Disease Watch Hotline on 1800 675 888.
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