No room for complacency with foot and mouth disease

Department of Agriculture and Water Resources

Travellers should remain vigilant of the risks posed by foot and mouth disease (FMD) and other pests and diseases when coming back to Australia.

Head of Biosecurity at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF), Dr Chris Locke warned people to be aware of biosecurity risks when travelling.

“We can all enjoy our holidays overseas, and after two years of the pandemic it’s great to be able to visit our neighbours,” Dr Locke said.

“But we still need to be vigilant of the biosecurity risks of travelling, especially in light of the recent incursion of FMD into Indonesia.

“Be sensible when you’re travelling. Don’t bring back anything you shouldn’t, like meat or dairy products. That includes takeaway food you might have bought at the airport before you arrived in Australia.

“Make sure your shoes are clean before you put them in your suitcase. And if you’re not sure about what you can bring to Australia, check on our website or ask a biosecurity officer when you arrive.

“Remember – you won’t get in trouble if you declare it!”

DAFF head of Traveller Operations Vikki Fischer said it was a good time to be alert to the threat of a pest or disease incursion.

“With the school holidays in full swing, many Australians are heading overseas to Bali for a much-needed break with their families,” Ms Fischer said.

“The FMD incursion in Indonesia is well in hand. We’ve been working closely with the Indonesian authorities, and we have every confidence in them.

“But biosecurity is everyone’s responsibility, and none of us can afford to be complacent.

“Australia’s agricultural industry and environment rely on all of us playing our part to keep out dangerous pests and diseases.”

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