New South Wales Senator, Perin Davey is urging travellers going to Bali or Indonesia for holidays to be aware of the outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease and how they can minimise the risk of bringing it into Australia.
Senator Davey said Foot and Mouth Disease is a highly contagious disease affecting cattle, sheep, goats and pigs which will dramatically impact trade and the economy.
“Holiday makers should leave thongs or sandals behind and upon return to Australia disinfect all other shoes and stay away from farms for at least a week,” Senator Davey said.
“If you have travelled from Indonesia or Bali, you must declare that you have been to rural areas or had contact with animals.
“We do not want this disease to reach Australia, so prevention is better than a cure.
“The disease can be bought home through contaminated footwear or clothes of people who have been in contact with an infected animal or visited an infected farm,” she said.
”The disease is estimated to circulate in 77% of the global livestock population. Countries that have not had Foot and Mouth Disease detected are at constant threat of incursion.
“If it gets to Australia, it is estimated it will cost our livestock industry around $80 billion and impact on our domestic and international meat markets.”
Senator Davey also encouraged local livestock producers to implement strict on-farm bio security measures just in case the disease crosses Australia’s borders.
She said the signs of Foot and Mouth Disease may include blisters in and around the mouth, drooling, and limping animals. Foot and Mouth Disease spreads through close contact of animals and can be carried by animal products.
It is important to understand the ramifications of Foot and Mouth Disease and be bio-aware to protect Australia’s livestock,” Senator Davey said.
For more information on Foot and Mouth Disease, visit Foot-and-mouth disease – DAFF