Livestock Registration Agency

– in the Scottish Parliament on 28th April 2022.

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Photo of Gordon MacDonald Gordon MacDonald Scottish National Party

2. To ask the Scottish Government what progress has been made on establishing a Scottish agency to create a fully functional, all-species data system for the registration of all livestock births, deaths and movements within Scotland. (S6O-01007)

Photo of Mairi Gougeon Mairi Gougeon Scottish National Party

The final element of the Scottish multispecies database system for the recording of cattle births, deaths and movements went live on 4 October 2021. The system was built and is operated by the Scottish Agricultural Organisation Society under the name of ScotEID. I would like to acknowledge and thank the cattle sector as a whole for its support during the development of that service.

Since the go-live date, 10,000 keepers have signed up for the ScotMoves+ platform and have electronically registered more than 282,000 calves, recorded 914,000 cattle movements, and notified more than 477,000 deaths at abattoirs.

Those figures highlight an important achievement in the delivery of improved traceability for disease prevention and control, as well as opportunities for enhancing efficiency and provenance in the livestock sector.

Photo of Gordon MacDonald Gordon MacDonald Scottish National Party

Given the importance of traceability and provenance to food safety, what difference will the agency make and what advantages does it offer farmers and crofters?

Photo of Mairi Gougeon Mairi Gougeon Scottish National Party

In addition to the enhanced livestock traceability and protection of the food chain, the ScotEID system provides benefits to Scottish cattle keepers, such as the bovine viral diarrhoea eradication programme, the ScotMoves+ system for within business movement recording, and the Scotch potential eligibility cattle checker, which provides evidence that animals have been born, raised and slaughtered in Scotland.

The system will enable the introduction of the electronic identification of cattle, the creation of an online holding register and the removal of cattle passports. Electronic identification, combined with the ScotEID systems, will enable real-time data transfer and sharing through the production chain from farm to farm, as well as feedback from abattoir to farm. All those components are key to improving economic and environmental efficiency in the livestock sector, and they will support trade within and outwith the United Kingdom.