The Databases Unit is responsible for the development and maintenance of the various software systems within the Animal Health & Welfare Department. These systems are kept in line with EU and National Legislation.
Various Systems were developed and set up, such as:-
The National Livestock Database - the official animal database.
Intra Trace - Database for records for intra community trade.
Inter Trace - Database for records for international trade.
The National Livestock Database is the database adopted by Malta for the identification and registration of bovine animals pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 1760/2000. The EU Commission officially recognised the database for bovine animals as fully operational in Malta from 1st May 2004.
The National Livestock Database
The National Livestock Database holds data on Malta's livestock population, including cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and poultry. The Government is required by EU regulations to keep this information. It includes data on traceability, animal health, food safety and animal welfare. All of the offices of the FFRC are connected to the database.
The database was developed by the Government in co-operation with The Veterinary Epidemiology Unit at The University of Reading, UK.
The cattle tracing system has been recognized by the European Commission as being "fully-operational" according to the requirements of EU regulations. Malta is the only member state to have achieved this recognition. It means that we do not have to use the printed cattle passports required in every other member state. Moreover, farmers do not have to apply for payments under the cattle subsidy schemes: payments are generated automatically according to the information in the database. This results in significant savings of cost and paperwork for the Government and farmers.
To maintain the benefits of EU recognition, it is essential that the records in the database are kept up to date and accurate, and that farmers promptly notify the FFRC of animal births, movements and deaths.