Liputan6.com, Jakarta – Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture has suspended some live cattle imports from Australia after the finding of lumpy skin disease (LSD) among the cows. Four out of 60 import facilities have received the suspension.
According to the head of Agricultural Quarantine Major Service (Barantan), Bambang, the cattles with LSD were found at Tanjung Priok port, North Jakarta.
The authorities found some cattles with symptoms of LSD during the inspection on 25 May-26 July. Later, the lab test confirmed LSD from those cows, and importation from the four facilities were suspended.
“Live cattle exports from Australia can still continue from the 56 farms or premises out of the 60 which are registered,” assured Bambang in Jakarta on Tuesday.
On the other hand, Australian government insists that Australia is LSD-free and that the LSD results were found after the cows “arrived and spent some time in Indonesia.”
“Given the presence of LSD in Indonesia, positive results in cattle post arrival in Indonesia are not unexpected. As Australia remains LSD free, a detection of LSD in another country—such as Indonesia—does not change Australia’s animal health status,” said a statement on Australia’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry website.
The statement is from Dr Mark Schipp, Chief Veterinary Officer of Australia. He also said that Australia has robust biosecurity systems to monitor animal disease status, including for LSD.
“Australia continues to trade livestock products internationally including live cattle to Indonesia,” said Dr Schipp.
Business Seeks Alternatives
Meanwhile, Indonesian Food and Beverage Entrepreneurs’ Association (GAPMMI) agrees with the suspension because LSD could be dangerous and spreading fast. But GAPMMI also asks the government to help finding alternatives besides Australia.
The head of GAPPMI, Adhi S. Lukman, said that the lack of meat supply could impact to the products such as meatball, sausage, and corned beef products as they compete in ASEAN markets.
“We have to anticipate where to make up for the undersupply, because Australia is among the mainstays for the beef-based industry,” said Adhi as quoted by the state-news agency Antara.
“If we do not anticipate this, we will lose against those countries [ASEAN]. Therefore we must expand the meat supply from various countries,” Adhi explained.
Arthur Gideon contributed to this report.
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