Supporting exporters and their supply chains to undertake initial audits at no cost, to gain first-hand experience of the Livestock Global Assurance Program (LGAP), and provide feedback to help AniMark with fine-tuning, is one of the ways the Livestock Export Program (LEP) is helping with the implementation of LGAP.
Following the release of an Export Advisory Notice allowing LGAP audits to be recognised by the regulator as part of an exporter’s ESCAS compliance, the audits are not just a theoretical exercise. Further audits will also be available at a reduced cost, and the LEP’s in-market team and AniMark will provide support throughout the process.
Exporters will play an important role in identifying depots, feedlots and abattoirs which may be ready for LGAP, and helping them to prepare. Through the implementation project, they can gain provisional membership free of charge, which provides access to AniMark’s IT conformance system and visibility (with strict permissions) of the audit and conformity information for their facilities.
Templates and guidance manuals (including translated versions) are available to help facilities carry out an initial assessment of their readiness to meet LGAP requirements. If they’re in a position to proceed, an internal audit is the next step, with AniMark and the LEP available to assist with training in how to use the IT system to record any nonconformities and associated evidence of corrective actions. AniMark then appoints an Approved Certification Body to allocate an Approved Auditor for the external audit.
Meanwhile, the working group set up by the department to review the operational elements of LGAP has held several meetings. One of its focus points is building a shared understanding of the regulatory interaction between the department and exporters under third party providers of assurance (TPPA) arrangements. The group will also receive briefings from the department on the legislative framework for the TPPA arrangement, which has been outlined in the exposure draft of the Export Control (Animals) Rules 2020, due to come into force on 28 March 2021.
Any exporters interested in learning more about LGAP and undertaking initial audits via the LEP implementation project are encouraged to contact AniMark or the LEP in-market team. One of the conditions is a willingness to provide feedback, so the lessons learnt can drive further efficiencies. The launch targets are Indonesia, Vietnam, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates; however, AniMark and the LEP will consider other markets on a case by case basis.