Indonesia claims new detections of lumpy skin disease in cattle from Broome-based export yards

New export restrictions slapped on two West Australian cattle yards by Indonesia will need to be resolved by Tuesday next week, according to the federal opposition.

There has been ongoing tension between Australian livestock producers and the Indonesian government since July when its authorities claimed to detect lumpy skin disease (LSD) in 13 exported Australian cattle.

Four facilities were banned from exporting to Indonesia until an investigation was undertaken, including Wyndham’s Consolidated Pastoral Company’s yards.

Australia’s Acting Chief Veterinary Officer Dr Beth Cookson said on Saturday it had been advised by Indonesia that eight additional positive tests had been recorded in cattle from three registered establishments in Australia after the livestock arrived in Indonesia.

“These registered establishments have not been suspended,” she said. 

The federal Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry confirmed two of the establishments were near Broome, while it was believed a third from the Northern Territory was under investigation.

Opposition agriculture spokesman David Littleproud said there had been a concerted effort by Australian authorities to rectify the issue.

“I am 100 per cent confident we don’t have LSD,” he said.

Mr Littleproud said the investigation into July’s detections had since been sent back to Indonesia to “vindicate” Australia’s LSD-free status.

“My understanding is there is a timeline,” he said.

“Indonesia has until September 12 to respond to that, and we are hoping at that juncture we will be able to demonstrate that the LSD in those cattle didn’t come from Australia, because Australia does not have LSD.”

Dr Cookson said the investigation had tested more than 1,000 cattle across WA, Queensland and the Northern Territory, and there had been no trace of the disease.

“Our disease status has not changed,” she said.

“The negative test results further highlight Australia’s robust systems for the ongoing monitoring of animal diseases, including LSD.