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Kathleen Curry

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Export Slaughter Intervals and Withholding Periods

Most chemicals have a withholding period to assist farmers, traders, abattoirs and exporters manage the risk of unsafe levels of the chemical entering into the human food chain protecting human safety as well as maintaining access to international markets.  Click here for more information on withholding period.

Export Slaughter Intervals (ESI) provide farmers, abattoirs and exporters with guidance on the time between the administration of a veterinary medicine to an animal and slaughter for export. ESIs manage differences between Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) allowed for veterinary medicines in Australia, and the MRLs of its trading partners. 

MRLs are the maximum concentration of a residue resulting from the registered use of an agricultural or veterinary chemical that is recommended to be legally permitted or recognized as acceptable in or on a food, agricultural commodity, or animal feed. 

By complying with an ESI and declaring at sale whether an animal is within an ESI, farmers are part of ensuring the safety of human food and maintaining Australia's access to international markets.

Click here to view the latest Export Slaughter Intervals

The withholding period is the minimum period which must elapse between last administration or application of a pesticide or veterinary medicine, including treated feed, and the slaughter, collection, harvesting or use of the animal or crop commodity for human consumption. WHPs are mandatory for domestic slaughter and are on the label of every registered product or alternatively upon the permit for unregistered or off-label uses.

Infopest provides a free service to search for registered labels and permits which contain withholding periods and MRLs.

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