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Spring racing carnival boosted by international imports



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S e n a t o r t h e H o n . J o e L u d w i g

M i n i s t e r f o r A g r i c u l t u r e , F i s h e r i e s a n d F o r e s t r y

S e n a t o r f o r Q u e e n s l a n d

M E D I A R E L E A S E

Media contact: Melissa Patch 0418 734 413 or Katana Smith 0459 813 574

Spring racing carnival boosted by international imports

The world’s best thoroughbreds will be part of this year’s spring racing carnival after making their way through quarantine.

The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry’s staff have facilitated the 22 international gallopers in their arrival into Australia to ensure Australia’s biosecurity was maintained.

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator Joe Ludwig, said DAFF officers worked closely with importers, racing authorities and foreign governments to ensure the international stars could join the Melbourne Cup.

“Our biosecurity system protects Australia’s primary production industries, our productivity and economy, and our environment from the severe and negative impacts of exotic animal diseases and plant pests,” Minister Ludwig said.

“An assessment of the health of horses is made before approving an import permit. Imported horses are required to undergo stringent testing for a range of diseases exotic to Australia as part of the import application process.”

DAFF also conducts rigorous inspections and assessments offshore quarantine facilities against stringent standards to reduce the risk of another equine influenza outbreak in Australia.

“Imported horses are then subject to a period of pre-export quarantine in approved premises before boarding the plane to Australia,” Minister Ludwig said.

“Earlier this year DAFF veterinarians travelled to Ireland in August to inspect new quarantine pre-export facilities to ensure they meet Australia’s biosecurity requirements.”

On arrival in Australia, horses are held at Racing Victoria Limited’s quarantine approved Werribee International Horse Centre, where their health is monitored to ensure they are free of diseases of concern.

24 OCTOBER 2012