A disease equally infectious to Mycoplasma bovis and Covid-19 is threatening farm profitability and livestock health.
Agriculture and biosecurity minister Damien O’Connor believes that the latest technical data shows the programme is on track.
“Two years ago, the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners committed to a 10-year, $880 million programme to eradicate M. bovis to protect our most important sector and the economy.”
O’Connor claims if the disease had been left to run rampant, he’s unsure whether the dairy and beef sectors would have been able to weather the economic storm of COVID-19 and the challenges of drought conditions.
“These sectors are now well-placed to lead us out of this economic crisis.”
O’Connor says he is proud of the farming community and they should be proud of themselves too.
“We currently have 17 active properties and 232 that have been cleared of the disease. We’ve culled 154,788 cattle.
O’Connor says the priority over the next 12-18 months will be continuing to find and eliminate the disease.
“We will get another technical advisory group report in the coming months, but two years into a 10-year effort, I’m pleased by the progress made.”
To view the most recent M. bovis facts and figures visit: https://www.mbovis.govt.nz