14 April 1999
MAFF pushes e-mail for cattle passports

By FWi staff

CATTLE passport applications to the British Cattle Movement Service (BCMS) will shortly be available by e-mail, the Government has announced.

The system for reporting cattle movements to the BCMS has been further developed to accept applications for cattle passports for animals still on their holding of birth.

“It will be less time consuming and allow them to make any number of applications in one transmission,” said Food Safety Minister, Jeff Rooker.

“It will also help with the efficient running of the BCMS.”

Cattle keepers can still use the pre-printed paper application forms to apply for passports but the Government is encouraging the use of e-mail because it is more efficient.

An e-mail system developed jointly by the National Farmers Union and ADAS is already being used by around 400 farmers to inform the BCMS of cattle movements quickly and efficiently.

The integrated package of forms also maintains the farms own records and avoids costly and timely duplication of efforts.

“Electronic application for cattle passports will avoid the bureaucracy of form filling and save farmers time and money,” said Andy Offer, ADAS information technology specialist.

“It will also improve the accuracy and speed of turnaround by BCMS, avoiding the hassle of chasing up passports.”

The Cattlemail system has been designed specifically to work alongside the Ministry of Agriculture and BCMS operations, making it extremely accurate, quick and simple to use.

The addition of cattle passport applications is expected in the coming weeks, as soon as conformance testing is completed.