Strategic Science Advisory Group on M. bovis
Science is critical to New Zealand’s response to the Mycoplasma bovis disease, and accelerating its eradication from New Zealand.
Role of the group
On 28 May 2018, the Government announced it was investing up to $30 million over 2 years into science to support the eradication of the cattle disease M. bovis from New Zealand.
The Mycoplasma bovis Strategic Science Advisory Group (SSAG) was established soon after to help identify science priorities and develop a science plan to guide research funding decisions. Members of the SSAG include domestic and international expert scientists, vets and government representatives.
Science plan will help speed up eradication
Released in October 2018, the M. bovis science plan’s objective is to identify the highest-priority science needed to eradicate the disease from New Zealand.
It builds on existing knowledge about the M. bovis bacteria and disease, and knowledge from the dairy and beef sectors and the response teams.
The science plan was developed with input from local and international experts from science, veterinary, and educational organisations, industry, and government agencies.
Research is being carried out across 7 specific areas, 5 of which focus on gaining information and learning to support M. bovis eradication efforts. They are:
- direct impacts of the disease
- entry pathways
- behaviour drivers and incentives.
The programme has also commissioned research on the social and economic impacts associated with the eradication to understand these impacts at farm, community, and national level.
SSAG science plan [PDF, 1.2 MB]
Members include local and international expert scientists, vets, and government representatives.
- John Roche, Departmental science adviser – MPI
- Nigel French, Distinguished professor and executive director – Infectious Disease Research Centre, Massey University
- Axel Heiser, Senior scientist – AgResearch
- Trish McIntosh, Director – North Canterbury Vets
- Hamish Gow, Professor of Agribusiness – Massey University
- James Turner, Resource economist and senior social scientist – AgResearch
- Shaun Hendy, Director – Te Pūnaha Matatini, University of Auckland
- Prue Williams, General manager – Science System Investment and Performance, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
- Mary van Andel, Principal adviser – MPI
- Glenn Browning, Professor and director Asia-Pacific Centre for Animal Health – Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, University of Melbourne
- Cameron Stewart, Senior research scientist – Australian Animal Health Laboratory, CSIRO
- William McMillian, Independent agribusiness consultant and scientist – Kaiārahi Ahuwhenua, Federation of Māori Authorities
- Roger Ayling, Private consultant with extensive M. bovis research experience, UK
Find out more
Strategic Science Advisory Group terms of reference [PDF, 717 KB]
Science project reports and fact sheets
Lifestyle block owners survey [PDF, 1.5 MB]
Who to contact
If you have questions about Mycoplasma bovis, email firstname.lastname@example.org