Ministry for Primary Industries develop animal welfare app
The Ministry for Primary Industries has developed an app to help farmers and truck drivers decide whether an animal should be transported.
Called 'Fit for Transport', the free app was designed because of the demand from veterinarians, transporters, stock agents and farmers, who wanted a tool that was easy to use on farm, Ministry animals and animal products director Paul Dansted said.
"The app allows them to determine on farm whether an animal is fit for transport."
The app advises farmers and drivers whether sick or injured cows, sheep or deer can be transported and gives advice on what to do if an animal that is not fit to be put on a truck.
By the end of this year, 'fit for transport' regulations will be developed for introduction in October 2018.
Serious cases of animal ill treatment would still be dealt with under the Animal Welfare Act.
The regulations will give the ministry more tools to deal with cases of low to medium seriousness by introducing fines and infringements.
Dansted said 10 prosecutions had been bought for the transportation of sick or injured stock in the last two years.
"Depending on the issue, the farmer or the transporter could be prosecuted. Companies may also be liable."
The app was released at the start of June and has been downloaded between 250 and 500 times so far, he said.