The National Livestock Identification Scheme

Local Land Services is a key stakeholder in Australia’s National Livestock Identification System (NLIS).

The NLIS is Australia’s scheme for identifying and tracing of livestock. It is crucial in protecting and enhancing Australia’s reputation and allowing Australia ongoing access to valuable export markets. The NLIS also enhances our ability to respond quickly to major food safety or disease incidents.

NLIS for cattle involves electronic identification and recording of all individual animal movements. All movements of cattle to sale, slaughter or to any other property are recorded in the NLIS database.

NLIS for sheep and goats is a mob-based system, using a combination of printed ear tags displaying a property identiļ¬cation code (PIC) and an NLIS movement document.

All movements of sheep and goats to sale, slaughter or to any other property are recorded in the NLIS database as a mob movement.

For more information on the NLIS, visit the NLIS website.

Property identification codes

Anyone who keeps or owns livestock in NSW is required to make sure the land on which the livestock are kept has a PIC assigned to it.

The types of livestock this applies to includes:

  • sheep
  • cattle
  • goats
  • pigs
  • horses
  • donkeys
  • deer
  • bison
  • buffalo
  • alpaca
  • llama
  • 100 or more poultry
  • and 10 or more emus or ostriches.

What is a PIC?

In NSW a PIC is a unique eight-character code assigned from a PIC register and maintained by Local Land Services. These registers hold information that identifies land, including:

  • property names
  • locations
  • further details of the trading entity and PIC manager.

Why you need a PIC

A PIC means all cattle, sheep and goats movements to sale, slaughter or any other property can be monitored and recorded on the NLIS database. This is essential when traces are needed.

Traces may be required when chemical and antibiotic residues are detected in meat or disease is detected in animals and an emergency response when required.

PICs are printed on approved NLIS tags that are attached to livestock and are also recorded on livestock movement documents including national vendor declarations (NVD), transported stock statements (TSS) and PigPass NVDs.

A PIC is also required for industry quality assurance programs including the Livestock Production Assurance and Australian Pork Industry quality programs.

How to get a PIC

If you own or keep livestock that have not previously been assigned a PIC we encouraged you to get a PIC for your property.

Ring 1300 795 299 or contact your Local Land Services office.

Look up your Local Land Services region.

Read frequently asked questions about PICs.

Related information