AAM Investment Group (AAM) has announced important additional changes to sale-day management procedures at the RLX network of livestock selling facilities in response to the COVID-19 epidemic that are being enforced for the protection of those individuals considered essential to on-site sale participation.
xAAM Managing Director, Garry Edwards, said the changes, which are in line with the latest advice of the Australian Government Department of Health, are aimed at protecting the safety of anyone who visits the eight RLX sites across Eastern Australia.
“I must reiterate, we need those individuals who do not have a genuine intent to purchase or are not essential to the sale-day process to remain away from the facility,” Mr Edwards said.
“We have effective processes for online bidding and remote sale participation in place, and we urge people to use these systems wherever possible.”
Mr Edwards said key additional changes included capturing the sign-in details of all people present at each sale and actively monitoring attendance and buying activity. Those who flout the rules would be excluded. Electronic sign-in systems are being fast tracked so that essential site users and staff can continue operations with minimal disruption.
“Our first priority is the health of those considered essential to the function of the sale including genuine buyers, agents, transporters and site staff, and we’re proactively implementing these changes to reduce the risk of exposure whilst in attendance at our network of livestock facilities,” Mr Edwards said
“We’re adhering to the latest government advice and that means those who must be on site also implementing the highest standards of personal hygiene, including washing hands thoroughly and avoiding unnecessary interpersonal contact, and that anyone who is showing symptoms of illness stays at home and accesses livestock sales through alternative means.”
Mr Edwards said now was the time to embrace the technology available to adhere to social distancing requirements while ensuring the continued flow of livestock through the supply chain.
“The responsibility of mitigating risk sits with every member of society. If people do not adhere to these reasonable requests, they will be asked to leave and if they don’t listen, they will be barred from attending the site,” Mr Edwards said.
“We have technology in place to ensure saleyards remain an active marketplace and it is now critical people shift the way they receive their market information and sales reports.
“The StockLive system of live-streaming and online bidding is being made available across all sales, at all sites, to provide an effective and efficient remote participation alternative to physically attending sale events.
“Everyone needs to take these measures seriously and take responsibility for their actions.”
The StockLive system has been used by RLX over the past two years and has proven to be a simple and effective platform for both vendors and buyers. First time uses of the system should visit www.rlx.com.au for full sale listings and links to live sales right across the country.
‘Viewing areas’ for buyers showing a live feed of the sale on digital screens have also been established at sites to facilitate maximised social distancing. Using the screens, buyers who are not active across all lines of livestock can still view and monitor the sale without needing to remain in the buyers’ gallery.
“This illness is one that brings many challenges, including the provision of a reliable source of safe and nutritious food, and as the manger and operator of large agricultural assets that are integral to both the domestic and export food supply chain, AAM is acutely aware of our role, and the role of our facilities, in maintaining a safe, active and transparent market place,” Mr Edwards said.
“AAM will continue to monitor the most current State and Federal Government advice on the situation and provide communications regarding any further advice that may require additional changes to onsite procedures.”