Coalition to counter activists claims

27 Aug, 2009 02:00 AM
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Fed up with attacks on livestock production, Narrogin lotfeeder Janet Thompson, with husband Matt, have formed the Coalition Against Animal Rights Activists and Regulations group.
Fed up with attacks on livestock production, Narrogin lotfeeder Janet Thompson, with husband Matt, have formed the Coalition Against Animal Rights Activists and Regulations group.

FED up with attacks on their livelihood, producers, processors and others involved in the WA meat industry are in the early stages of forming a coalition against animal rights activists and regulations.

Narrogin beef producer Janet Thompson spoke out against the RSPCA last week and said producers must stand strong against such organisations who work full time against agricultural industries.

"I commend the live export industry for their quick response and pro-active advertising," Ms Thompson said.

"Did that message get to the urbanites?

"I certainly hope so, but I'm not sitting around waiting for someone else to do that."

The Coalition Against Animal Rights Activists and Regulations is in its formative stages, but Ms Thompson said she had received a lot of interest.

"The thing is, producers are so busy producing that they don't have time to put their positive stories out there," she said.

"All these horrible stories come out but we don't have time to respond."

Ms Thompson said an example was the latest edition of Time Magazine, which had a damning story on agriculture, in particular on meat production.

She said it was difficult for producers to counter that sort of negative publicity, but it was important to get on the front foot.

"What I mean by getting on the front foot is actually getting into schools, getting out there and educating people and letting them see what we do," Ms Thompson said.

"As society becomes more urbanised we see an increased disconnection with how our food is produced and where it comes from.

"Agriculture ends up looking like the bad guy."

Read the full story in this week's Farm Weekly.

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READER COMMENTS

mick
27/08/2009 5:26:43 AM, on Farm Weekly

Animals rights groups have a very small number of members, but are focused solely on one job, making it hard for farmers to produce meat and profit. I know farmers who have had these clowns illegally enter their land and go through the sheep at lambing time, disturbing the lambs and ewes on their quest to find a dead sheep they could report to the DPI. Of course the DPI know sheep die of natural causes, but these people take up valuable time and waste the time of the farmer with ficticious claims. It's time ALL farmers were more active in promoting their industry and standing up for their rights collectively.
Karry
27/08/2009 5:49:42 AM, on Farm Weekly

Show us the proof of any group in West Aust which is trying to shut down your industry. RSPCA is hardly in that category given they have more than 2 farmers on their RSPCA controlling board, and we are all sure that these 2 make damn sure no bother comes from the organisation. Another load of unsubstantiated scaremongering clap trap designed to delay good welfare which we ALL know the industry is in dire need of.
Qlander
27/08/2009 10:51:23 AM, on Farm Weekly

Where do I sign up?
shaun
27/08/2009 1:18:58 PM, on Farm Weekly

Most of all the producers who ill treat stock are gone. If you don't look after your stock you go broke. It costs you money to lose animals. Poor-fed, abused livestock don't make money. Well-fed and cared-for animals is what makes you profit. When all these animal rights nazis run out of farmers to pick on they will turn against kids and their household pets. I think we should have an open season on these clowns a little like duck season.
Judy
27/08/2009 1:58:00 PM, on Farm Weekly

Good farmers need not be worried about regulations or activists. The only ones that should be worried are the ones that are involved in extremely cruel practices such as live export, battery pig production and battery egg production. Anyone can see that these animals are not being treated properly and are suffering. Many groups working towards a phase out of live exports are asking for chilled meat to replace the trade, or for free range eggs to replace battery eggs - not veganism, so I don't know what the problem is. Good animal practices are starting to become a lot more important to the purchasing public and the farmers that stay stuck in their old ways and resist change, will lose out big time.
truth will prevail
27/08/2009 1:59:29 PM, on Farm Weekly

Mulesing, ear tagging, castration, tail docking, ovarectomies on cattle - all with out pain-killers - all without anaesethics. The dominion of sadistic man over defenceless animals and the call for mercy!
Kathleen
27/08/2009 2:15:12 PM, on Farm Weekly

There's a viable alternative option in the frozen carcass trade. Any unnecessary suffering of an animal inflicted by humans should never be allowed to occur, anywhere in the world, but least of all in this so-called civilised society in which we live.
john
27/08/2009 2:17:59 PM, on Farm Weekly

Geez, what is it with some sections of the farming community; they don't want to be held accountable for any of their actions, and are always putting the blame elsewhere. Animal rights/welfare groups aren't trying to shut down agriculture; some activists are vegetarian, some aren't, but all eat food that is grown on farms. Activists are simply seeking more compassionate and sustainable methods of food production. Perhaps if some farming groups would pull their collective heads out of the sand, and do some research, they may instigate changes themselves, instead of whining about groups pressuring them into change. A good start would be to read the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation's 2006 report 'Livestock's Long Shadow'. Current farming practices have had a disastrous effect on ecosystems world-wide, and continue to do so; so have a think about what can be changed for the benefit of all, then take action. http://www.fao.org/docrep/010/a07 01e/a0701e00.HTM
Brian
27/08/2009 2:40:45 PM, on Farm Weekly

Don't let a small number upset it for everybody. There's good and bad about both sides I'm sure. As far as I've read it should be focused on unnecessary overseas live animal transport. The producers have a job and livelihood to support but there must be a compromise. They are hard working and under-appreciated. However if 'any' industry went unchecked you'll always find it gets taken advantage of by the unscrupulous. A coalition aimed to blanket combat all animal rights activists is just as overzealous and unnessasary as the small number of activists that go too far. Haven't both sides got better things to do?
Bob52
27/08/2009 3:03:26 PM, on Farm Weekly

God forbid that a few animal welfare guidelines should get in the way of the almighty dollar. Agriculture, or more specifically what the urbanite's call 'factory farming' IS in need of some better regulations. I've seen it from the inside out and it's changed my opinion on things. To every hysterical greeny there are many hundreds of decent people who just want to see some form of humane treatment for these animals we make our money from. Get used to it people, or get into something more sustainable and in the long term, profitable.
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