Producers make daily management decisions for the best practice of their property and the welfare of their pigs. However, these decisions are now being viewed under tighter scrutiny due to the introduction of PigPass. For some producers there are several grey areas which surround the Withholding Periods (WHP’s) and Export Slaughter Intervals (ESI’s).
PigPass is concerned with the animal husbandry of pigs and includes some information and questions around the WHP’s and ESI’s for commonly used veterinary medicines.
The WHP is calculated to ensure pork products for the domestic markets complies with our local standards.
The ESI does the same for products destined for export markets, to ensure that the requirements of the importing country are met. There is currently no internationally set standard for ESI’s - every country regulates their own according to their local MRLs.
In the case of the Singapore market, they do not have set MRLs, instead they defer to Codex MRLs, which are the internationally accepted standard. Potentially, every product registered for use in pigs in Australia with or without a Codex MRL is at risk of causing a violation in Singapore, if the ESI is not observed. Japan also follows their own lists of MRLs and banned substances.
The different standards from country to country create implications for both the producers and processors.
Currently producers have several concerns with ESIs, including:
• The extended time frame between the WHP and the ESI, for example the WHP for Toltrazuril (Baycox) is 70 days, while the ESI is 100 days; the WHP for Flunixin (an anti-inflammatory drug) is 7 days while the ESI is 25 days.
• Declaration issues surround compounds such as Dimetridazole (DMZ) which is banned in most overseas markets although has a 5 day WHP in Australia where it is still a registered drug for use in pigs. Producers are concerned that even though they have used compounds some time ago e.g. 6 months, it still needs to be declared. APL understands that until 1 January 2007, where pigs have been treated with DMZ (date of last use declared on PigPass) and comply with a 28 day ESI, pigs are still eligible for export.
• Individual export processor declaration requirements for relating to DMZ should be made clearer in early 2007.
• Florfenicol and Olaquindox (both antibiotics) are both pending establishment of ESIs and declaring these compounds is not required until the 1st of January 2007. The proposed ESI for Olaquindox is 28 days, where the WHP is 12 hours. Pigs destined for slaughter in export abattoirs should not be treated with Olaquindox after 1 December 2006.
• Maldison (control of lice and mange) and Tripelennaine (antihistamine) have no ESI, and these compounds must be declared on PigPass.
Future movements in ESI’s and export market requirements will be tracked and communicated to producers by APL and the export processors.