AIR systems under the spotlight

The importance of animal identification and traceability systems came under the spotlight at the CSIR International Convention Centre in Pretoria recently.

The symposium on animal identification and recording (AIR) systems for traceability and livestock development in sub-Saharan Africa was organised by the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Minister of agriculture Senzeni Zokwana, said SA had a credible ‎AIR system in the Intended Registration and Genetic Information System which the department planned to roll out to other SADC countries.

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The system, he said, helped curb stock theft and disease.

Joel Mamabolo, director of animal health at the department of agriculture, said animal identification was compulsory in SA as part of the Animal Identification Act. There were currently 666 862 registered marks in the country.

Dr Sihle Mdluli of the Swaziland Livestock Information and Traceability System (SLITS) said SLITS helped control diseases, stock theft, and was based on a system which required livestock owners to register at their local dip tanks.

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