Government response and recovery plan for FMD
A New Zealand Government plan released in December 2018 sets out how we would respond to and recover from an outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD). This plan is under review.
The 2018 plan provides information on:
- coordination arrangements at a national level
- the disease and its impact
- how the New Zealand Government will manage a response and recovery effort.
It is for the highest levels of Government: Ministers, chief executives, senior officials, and other personnel involved in a response and recovery effort.
The NZ Government's foot and mouth disease response and recovery plan [PDF, 6.2 MB]
Working with government agencies and other partners in a response to FMD
If we ever have an outbreak of FMD, the plan requires an all-of-government response.
MPI would lead the biosecurity response and action the plans. Many New Zealand agencies would have important roles – for example:
- Police and the New Zealand Defence Force would help with on-the-ground operations such as controlling the movement of livestock.
- Regional councils would help to identify carcass disposal sites, and issue and monitor resource consents.
- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and MPI would negotiate the earliest possible resumption of international trade in animal products.
- Treasury and the Reserve Bank would monitor and manage the effects on the New Zealand economy.
- MPI, the Ministry of Social Development, and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment would help individual farmers, rural communities, and primary production businesses with welfare and recovery.
Primary industry sector bodies, including Government Industry Agreement partners, local authorities and iwi will all play important roles in any FMD response.
Surveillance and reporting of foot and mouth disease
Surveillance and reporting of suspicious clinical signs are vital to FMD readiness. MPI has a 24-hour hotline for people to report suspected exotic pests and diseases (such as FMD). The hotline makes reporting quick and easy and helps us to detect a disease outbreak as soon as possible.
Freephone our pest and disease hotline on 0800 80 99 66.
Network of vets to investigate reports
MPI maintains a network of trained veterinarians around the country to investigate reports of suspected exotic diseases. These initial investigating vets are often local vets that have received special training in exotic disease recognition. They are on standby 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so they can be at a property within hours of a report on our hotline.
If the initial investigating vet can't rule out FMD, a highly trained MPI vet (an incursion investigator) will go to the property, as soon as possible, to provide a second opinion.
MPI's Animal Health Laboratory in Wallaceville specialises in testing for exotic animal diseases like FMD. If the incursion investigator can't rule out FMD (or another exotic disease), they will collect samples and send them to the lab to identify the disease.
Locating livestock during an outbreak is critical to containing and eradicating FMD. It's also critical we can trace livestock movements that have happened before FMD is discovered, to show where the disease might have spread.
The National Animal Identification and Tracing (NAIT) system is an online tool used to record cattle and deer movements. It can provide fast and accurate tracing to support disease management.
Who to contact
If you think you've seen a case of FMD, call your local vet immediately – they will contact MPI's pest and disease hotline. If a vet isn't available, contact our hotline directly on 0800 80 99 66.
If you have questions about FMD, email firstname.lastname@example.org