Meeting HGP Regulated Control Scheme (RCS) requirements

Veterinarians, verifiers, processors, and those in charge of animals implanted with hormonal growth promotants (HGPs) need to be aware of their legal responsibilities.

HGP Regulated Control Scheme

In New Zealand, the use of HGPs implanted into bovine animals is strictly controlled through the HGP Regulated Control Scheme (RCS). You need to be familiar with your full legal obligations under the scheme.

Using HGPs on cattle

There are very particular requirements for farmers and veterinarians about how HGPs are implanted and how those cattle are identified.

Implanting HGPs

The HGP implant must only be implanted under the skin of the animal's ear.

Ear tags

All implanted cattle must be identified prior to the HGP implantation with 2 tags:

  • MPI's approved orange HGP ear tag – this tag must not be used for any other purpose other than identifying HGP treated cattle
  • a primary tag used under the Animal Health Board (AHB) or the Livestock Improvement Corporation (LIC) MINDA identification systems.

You must also:

  • ensure that tags are attached to the animal by the owner or person in charge of the cattle
  • enter individual animal tag details into the HGP database
  • update individual animal details in the database if ear tags are replaced
  • re-tag animals in accordance with the approved animal specification if their tags are lost.

Checking HGP compliance

Farms and veterinary practices may be audited to verify that the HGP usage requirements are being met. Regular audits are completed in export cattle slaughter premises and individual cattle ear tags and tag numbers are checked at slaughter against HGP database details.

If requirements aren't met, it is an offence under the Animal Products Act (APA) 1999. You could face a range of penalties, depending on the results of the investigation. Individuals can be fined up to $20,000 and farms run as companies up to $100,000 for failing to comply with MPI's HGP implantation and record keeping requirements.

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