Livestock Live (LSL) provide in-house software to Livestock Marts around Ireland for the last two years. They have developed a platform which, not only provides mart software, but also allows remote online bidding, video streaming and an online document solution.
In other words, a ‘Farmer Free’ online livestock mart.
LSL have been in communication with the Department of Agriculture, outlining their proposals and seeking guidance from the Minister. LSL are working with a number of marts around the country, with a view to put in place virtual auction protocols, under the guidance of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine
They have proposed three separate options to find a way to keep the marts trading – those options are -
• to operate a video streaming virtual live auction where animals are dropped off and collected. No public would be on the mart premises.
• to import the animal data from AIM, ICBF and Bord Bia to the auction. Videos are recorded at the farm and uploaded onto the platform. Estimated weights are entered (unless the seller has a weighing scales) After the auction, animals are organised to be delivered to the mart, weighed and price per kilo amended based on actual weight. Buyers collect animals at the mart. The mart use their internal software to report the movement to AIM. The mart facilitates the payment and collection of payments online to ensure sellers benefit from the mart guarantee payment scheme.
• Similar to Option 2, LSL reports the ‘farm to farm’ movement via the LSL Farm Management App/software. The seller requests a certificate from AIM via the LSL App after the virtual online sale has completed. The bidding will mostly be based on estimated weights. The buyer must accept that the bids are placed based on the pre-recorded video and the estimated weight by the seller. The animals do not go to the mart to be weighed and each lot is sold as seen (pre-recorded video) and estimated weight. The buyer and seller arrange the transport of the lots directly.
Any Marts held under these new protocols would be in full compliance with the advice, and guidance of the National Public Health Emergency Team, with Public Health protocols fully adhered to
LSL currently supplies thee major livestock marts in Ireland namely Gortatlea in Kerry, Carnaross in Meath and Manorhamilton in Leitrim, which are amongst the most important marts in the country
Over the past number of weeks with the pending pandemic of COVID-19, LSL set out to combine years of developed technology to prepare for a situation where marts could be closed to the public, but that normal public auctions could be replaced by online trading.
Due to COVID-19 public safety restrictions, LSL software can run solely online auctions at the marts to facilitate farm-to-farm sales with no public present at the mart. No public or farmers will enter the mart facilities. All bidding and viewing will be carried out entirely online.
LSL online bidding solution is an entirely ‘contactless’ system of selling live animals. All engagement with the farmer takes place online. It also ensures complete instant electronic compliance and checks to DAFM (Dept of Agriculture, Food and the Marine), and AIM (Animal Identification and Movement)regulations and movement compliance.
Last Tuesday (March 24th) LSL tested the final version of this concept, with a live mart at Carnaross, Co Meath, before the Government shut-down. Webcams were installed into the ring and online bidding via mobile phone and PC were tested.
This was a pilot test with some farmers bidding and buying animals online via mobile App and PC’s remotely from the mart. This trial was very well received and exceeded expectations
The App is easily and readily available, at no charge to the farmer, via Android and Apple platforms.