A standstill will reduce the spread and costs of foot-and-mouth disease
Detection of foot-and-mouth disease is likely to result in immediate closure of export markets for Australia’s livestock and livestock products.
Minimising the spread of the disease through a standstill will reduce the devastating economic and social consequences of a foot-and-mouth disease outbreak to livestock producers, livestock and regional industries and Australia's economy.
Foot-and-mouth disease is a highly contagious virus that spreads between animals by:
- movement of infected animals
- direct contact with an infected animal
- air-borne particles from infected animals
- movement of contaminated animal products (such as wool or manure), vehicles, equipment and people.
Ceasing all movement of livestock with cloven hooves will significantly reduce the spread of foot-and-mouth disease around the country and reduce the costs and time spent eradicating the disease.
A review of the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the United Kingdom in 2001 estimated that the epidemic could have been reduced by 30-50% had a national movement ban been imposed three days earlier.