Meat, livestock and dairy workers

Information about foot-and-mouth disease for farm workers and contractors, livestock and dairy transporters, meat processing workers and inspectors, and butchers.


Safety in an outbreak

If an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease occurred in New Zealand, people who work with animals wouldn't face any extra health risks. Foot and mouth virus is an animal health disease and is not considered a risk to human health. Infection in humans is extremely rare with only minor symptoms documented.

Follow biosecurity guidelines

Raw and untreated meat should always be carefully discarded. To prevent diseases from spreading, it should never be fed as waste to pigs, cattle, sheep, goats, deer, alpaca or llama.
Foot-and-mouth disease spreads easily from animal to animal. If an outbreak occurred, you'd need to adjust the way you work to help prevent healthy animals from becoming infected. Ask your manager or industry association for more information.

Drivers of stock trucks and dairy tankers

If an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease occurred, a National Livestock Standstill would be put in place, meaning all movement of susceptible animals would be banned with immediate effect, and until further notice.

Your manager would provide advice on what to do if you were transporting livestock when a ban was announced. What you need to do will depend on where you are. In most cases, drivers would continue to their destination by the most direct route.

National Livestock Standstill – fact sheet [PDF, 278 KB]

Report suspected cases

If you think animals might have foot-and-mouth disease, call the MPI pest and disease hotline on 0800 80 99 66.

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