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Ontario Beef to learn from Australia : Traceability – can it be done?

Focussed on beef sector traceability, a new report from the consulting firm Value Chain Management International, suggests that the Ontario beef industry could improve its competitiveness and profitability by learning from the achievements of the Australian national traceability system

The report highlights that an effective chain-length traceability system is built upon the three pillars of premises ID, animal ID and movement reporting,

It suggests that a key challenge facing Ontario’s beef industry is that any traceability system is only as good as the data that is fed into it, and how that data is managed and then acted upon.

The Value Chain Management International report further suggests that “establishing a more effective traceability system would hinge on industry making challenging decisions and addressing issues that have historically undermined the development of a traceability system which could emulate Australia’s National Livestock Information System (NLIS).” 

The report suggests that industry-government partnerships have played a valuable role in Australian sector moving forward.

The report determines that Ontario’s beef industry has considerable opportunity to benefit financially by establishing a more effective beef traceability system than currently exists. This would enable producers and downstream businesses to use traceability as a valuable management tool. It would also enable the industry to capture new and preferred markets — in North America and further afield.

Perhaps most interestingly, the report includes an Appendix C - which provides an interesting read about the ongoing history of beef traceability in Canada. 

Will this report be the latest in a series of reports, studies, projects and initiatives that ‘nudge’ the Traceability ball ?   As Appendix C highlights, this has already been a ‘very long road’ – and while the ball occasionally gets nudged… there seems to be very little positive momentum

The full report is available at

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