Supply chain abuzz with talk of LPA shake-up

27 March 2024

Changes are believed to be afoot for how the LPA is implemented, which may encourage greater use of eNVD. Pic: Integrity Systems website.

An article by  Natasha Lobban

The Livestock Production Assurance (LPA) accreditation program is believed to be getting another makeover and it’s reportedly going to cost farmers more. 

Industry insiders understand that the current three-year program will be replaced by a bi-annual self-assessment model. 

It is believed a fee increase of 30% or more has been proposed and that the changes could come into effect as early as July 1.  

National Vendor Declarations (NVDs) are also believed to be increasing in cost but are not expected to change format. 

The industry grapevine has been buzzing with news of the changes in recent weeks, with many farmers concerned about the increased fees and not having an opportunity to have input into the change. 

Last week a spokesperson for Integrity Systems Company (ISC), which operates the assurance program, was unwilling to confirm if changes were forthcoming. 

“Given the importance of the program for market access and the future of our industry, it is necessary for the program to be reviewed periodically by industry,” the spokesperson said. 

“At this stage there are no changes in place for the LPA program, the accreditation method, cost or timetable.  

"As is usual practice, ISC will communicate any changes to the program to industry as they come to hand.” 

The changes have been confirmed to APlus News by multiple farmer sources and have been communicated to industry bodies. 

Sheep Producers Australia Chief Executive Officer Bonnie Skinner said, “ISC has informed SPA that the LPA Accreditation Program is switching over to the new self-assessment model, with all producers expected to have transitioned by 30 June 2027,” Ms Skinner said. 

“Through SPA’s participation on the Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) Supply Chain Task Force, SPA is engaged and consulted on potential changes to the program as they arise.  

“SPA’s objective through this process is to ensure that sheep specific issues that arise in Integrity Systems’ programs are managed to the satisfaction of industry.” 

Cattle Australia (CA) Chief Executive Officer, Dr Chris Parker, also said reforms to the Livestock Producer Assurance (LPA) accreditation system had been progressed through the MLA Supply Chain Taskforce, of which Cattle Australia is a member. 

“The reforms are designed to strengthen LPA accreditation through the implementation of the new self-assessment process and a shortened LPA re-accreditation cycle, and drive eNVD adoption through pricing incentives, while also delivering a more sustainable funding base for the LPA program into the future,” Dr Parker said. 

The accreditation program ensures Australian red meat continues to meet the needs of global and domestic markets and covers seven key requirements across food safety, biosecurity and animal welfare that producers need to satisfy to become accredited. 

As of this afternoon, producers were still being actively encouraged to re-accredit with the current system on the LPA website. 

While APlus News has been told of the changes from multiple credible sources, others have suggested the changes have yet to be agreed upon. 

APlus News has reached out to an ISC representative today for comment, but they did not respond by the time of publication. 


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