A recent survey of producers confirmed that veterinarians across the country play an active role in advising livestock producers about on-farm biosecurity and general farm management issues.
The reminder for vets of their advisory role comes from data collected in the 2013 Farm Biosecurity producer survey which uncovered some interesting results about how producers get their information.
Animal Health Australia’s Executive Manager, Biosecurity, Duncan Rowland, said the survey revealed one in five producers go to their vet for information on general farm management advice or issues.
“The survey showed us that overall, 20 per cent of producers say they rely primarily on their vet for information about farm management or advice on general issues they might have. Other popular sources for information about farm management included agronomists, local departments of primary industries the internet and print media,” said Mr Rowland.
Mr Rowland said the results showed the need for vets to be armed with the right material when advising producers.
“More than half of all livestock producers surveyed identified vets as their key source of information for animal health and biosecurity related matters. Naturally, vets would be the first choice for matters about animal health, however, with many vets also providing information about biosecurity, it is important that they have the best and most up-to-date information and advice.
“That’s why all vets who deal with livestock animals should visit the Farm Biosecurity website where they can access a wealth of information about stopping diseases and pests coming on to the property.
“The Farm Biosecurity website is perfect for livestock vets. It has everything from videos on avoiding diseases, manuals with step-by-step guides on implementing biosecurity and a variety of helpful fact sheets.
“With the right information on-hand, vets can help producers stop animal diseases and pests in their tracks. As everyone knows, prevention is much better and cheaper than the cure,” said Mr Rowland.
The Farm Biosecurity producer survey was conducted in August and September 2013, by telephone, involving a total 1273 producers across the main producer groups of livestock, grains and crops.
The survey was designed so that results could be compared with similar results from the survey conducted in 2010.
This important data will help Animal Health Australia and Plant Health Australia to better target future activities delivered by the Farm Biosecurity Program.