National Residue Survey 2012–13 Cattle National Residue Survey 2012–13 Cattle
The program
The animal product program monitors the The chemicals tested for in NRS animal product residue status of Australian meat products in monitoring include those that may be used accordance with the maximum residue limits in animal production in Australia, as well as and contaminant levels set out in the Australia those that may be important for international New Zealand Food Standards Code.
trade. These include persistent chemicals such The NRS animal product program fulfils the as organochlorines that are no longer used in requirements of the Australian Government Department of Agriculture and the export certification requirements of international trading partners, ensuring Australia's During 2012–13, a total of 5 925 samples were market access. The program also supports collected from cattle and analysed for residues state and territory licensing of domestic of veterinary drugs, animal treatments, processing facilities and industry quality agricultural chemicals and environmental contaminants. The overall compliance rate with relevant Australian Standards was 100 per cent.
NRS reviews the sampling plans annually These results assure Australian and overseas in close consultation with industry and customers of the excellent residue and the Department of Agriculture before final contaminant status of Australian cattle. approval. Sample collection rates are based on The industry has shown a high degree of production levels in Australia, or are directed compliance with Australian Standards over the by overseas market access requirements if the past decade.
commodity is to be exported.
Animal products are sampled by authorised Testing and traceback
government officers at export abattoirs and If a sample is found to contain a residue by quality control staff at domestic abattoirs. above the Australian Standard, a traceback The samples are sent from collection points at investigation is undertaken to establish the the abattoirs to a central receival and dispatch cause. The responsible state or territory agency facility within NRS, where they are sorted then provides advice to the producer to prevent into batches and sent to contract laboratories recurrence. In more serious circumstances for analysis.
regulatory action may also be taken.
The sampling is designed so that the All traceback activities and findings are probability of an abattoir being selected for reported to NRS. This feedback to participating random monitoring is proportional to the industries is important in highlighting commodity throughput of that abattoir (that is, potential problems (such as inappropriate the number of animals being slaughtered). NRS chemical use) and improving on-farm sends sample requests to abattoirs specifying practices. Where appropriate, traceback the date, the class of animal and the type of information is also forwarded to industry and sample required (meat, fat, liver, kidney or government authorities for consideration. urine). Animals for sampling are then selected Traceback information may also be forwarded at random along the slaughter chain.
to the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority for consideration during its chemical review processes.
Chemicals Samples Compliance (%) Veterinary drugs and animal treatments Benzimidazoles and macrocyclic lactones Aminoglycosides, anticoccidials, antimicrobials, beta lactams, cephalosporins, macrolides, phenicols, Resorcyclic acid lactones, steroids, Other Veterinary Drugs Beta-agonists and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs Agricultural chemicals, animal treatments and environmental contaminants Fungicides, Herbicides Benzoyl ureas, carbamates, fungicides, herbicides, insecticides, organochlorines, organophosphates, persistent organic pol utants and pyrethroids (ISO/IEC 17025:2005) and value for money. Laboratories are proficiency tested by NRS NRS has been accredited by the National to ensure the validity of analytical results. Association of Testing Authorities (NATA) Current laboratory contracts began on as a proficiency test provider since July 1 July 2011 and will run to 30 June 2014.
2005. The NRS proficiency testing system is recognised within the laboratory community as meeting internationally accepted standards International maximum
(ISO/IEC 17043:2010) to establish the technical residue limits
competence of participating laboratories.
NRS maintains international maximum residue Residue testing is conducted by several limit tables for countries that are major export laboratories under contract with NRS. markets for Australian primary produce. These Laboratories are selected through tables can be found on the NRS website.
the Australian Government tendering process on the basis of their proficiency, accreditation against international standards

National Residue Survey 2012–13 The National Residue Survey
The National Residue Survey (NRS) is part of
an Australian Government and industry
strategy to minimise chemical residues and
environmental contaminants in Australian
food products and promote market access.
NRS residue monitoring programs support
Australia's food industry and primary
producers by confirming Australia's status as a
producer of clean food and facilitating access
to key export markets. NRS programs provide
confirmation of good agricultural practices,
help to identify potential residue problems,
and indicate where follow-up action is needed.
Residues can be present in food either through natural circumstances or as a consequence of agricultural or industrial activities. NRS contracts laboratories to analyse samples for residues of pesticides, veterinary medicines and environmental contaminants. Samples are collected from 21 animal products including meat, honey, eggs, wild-caught fish and aquaculture products; 21 grains, pulses and oilseeds; and six horticultural products including pome fruit, macadamia, onion, almond and citrus.
Originally established in 1961 following concerns about pesticide residues in exported meat, NRS is largely industry-funded through levies on participating animal and plant commodity producers. NRS testing includes random and targeted programs. All NRS programs are underpinned by an ISO 9001:2008 quality management system.
General enquiries Phone 1800 420 919Fax (02) 6272 4023Email [email protected] Postal addressNational Residue Survey GPO Box 858, Canberra ACT 2601 Australia


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