Live ex 'legal, legitimate, responsible': ALEC

03 Feb, 2015 12:00 PM
A call to ban the live trade fails to take account of the real consequences a ban would impose

RENEWED calls for a ban on live animal export from Australia fail to take into account the detrimental consequences, including erosion of animal welfare standards and serious economic impacts, say livestock exporters.

The Australian Livestock Exporters' Council (ALEC) has responded to an animal rights campaign saying that not only is it a legal and legitimate industry, it is also acting responsibly by striving to meet community animal welfare expectations.

A campaign to ban the live animal export industry was last week launched with bus and billboard advertisements by Animals Australia suggesting the trade is a "crime against animals".

Alison Penfold, ALEC chief executive officer, said her organisation was already working hard to educate the public about how animal welfare standards had been improved and said suggesting the trade was criminal by nature was simply wrong.

"We all want the humane treatment of livestock but we do not accept that banning the Australian live trade is the way to achieve it," she said.

"Rather than spending money on billboards and buses as a means to improve animal welfare, Australian live exporters and their customers are investing in people and livestock facilities around the world to ensure the welfare of livestock in our charge through practical on-the-ground training and improvements in handling, husbandry and slaughter practices.

"Significant improvements have already been made as demonstrated in the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) Report released by the government last month, including the increased use of pre-slaughter stunning and modernisation of restraint and slaughter equipment.

"We know we are not done yet and will continue to implement improvements to our practices and infrastructure by working constructively with our customers and facility operators that handle Australian livestock."

Ms Penfold said the beef industry had been upfront in acknowledging that despite the significant improvements made in the welfare of exported livestock, there had been a number of serious incidents of the mistreatment of animals.

"Brutal treatment of livestock - like the tying up of the bull pictured in the current advertising campaign - has no place in the Australian live trade and will not be tolerated," she said.

"Industry has taken action including the sacking of staff, removing facilities access to further consignments of Australian livestock and suspending whole markets where appropriate in response to cruel and improper handling and slaughter.

"This is over and above the numerous sanctions that have been placed on exporters by the Australian government.

"Animals Australia's call to ban the live trade as the only solution fails to take account of the real consequences a ban would impose - that is, obliterating a billion dollar-plus industry and the livelihood of thousands of people.

"Their approach also fails to address the other real dilemma - that a ban of the trade would not improve animal welfare.

"Australian markets would go to exporters who don't invest in welfare, don't train staff in livestock humane handling, don't consider the health and welfare needs of livestock on trucks and vessels, don't work to any welfare standards and who don't strive for continuous improvement.

"We could see significant negative welfare consequences for cattle, sheep and goats left here at home without viable markets.

"And without our influence in markets which the international animal health and welfare body (OIE) recognises as world leading, animal welfare outcomes would deteriorate.

Ms Penfold said that there was no question that Australian exporters would continue to improve the welfare of exported livestock, and indeed local livestock in markets as well.

"Getting better welfare is not just about compliance for industry. We are striving for zero harm, and while we are not perfect in the face of significant challenges we do accept responsibility to improve."

"Our message to Australians who might see this latest Animals Australia campaign is that the live trade has made positive progress in the treatment of exported livestock.

"The industry's focus and effort is on continuous improvement but a ban would turn back the clock on animal welfare and have serious negative consequences for Australia, Australians and global standards."

Date: Newest first | Oldest first


3/02/2015 2:59:52 PM

It would appear that AA has no compassion for humans. They would prefer to have people from overseas countries starve rather than Australia export animals to feed them.
angry australian
4/02/2015 4:01:00 AM

About time ALEC took a Churchillian rather than a Chamberlain attitude to groups like AA. Appeasement does not work. Already our farmers are sacrificing income to appease the bludgers of the world by funding ESCAS. This puts them at a disadvantage to any other nation that enters the trade. In fact there is an argument that the Federal Government should fund ESCAS from tax revenue considering the benefits livex gives the nation in job creation, export income etc. Nothing AA does adds economic benefit to the nation.
4/02/2015 5:41:58 AM

The life export's primary concern is money. To think that life export stops people from starving overseas is absurd. Life export and the feedlots many of these animals go into actually decreases the amount of food available for humans. Animals produce meat to the amount of grain they are fed at a rate of about 1/10. It is a scientific fact that there will be more food for all humans to eat if the life export and feedlots are all shut down. We should stop making making money from the exploitation and killing of weaker species. Life export is the modern transatlantic slave trade.
Bushfire Blonde
4/02/2015 6:03:50 AM

Lee, how is grain going to be grown successfully in a lot of the areas where cattle are presently being grazed - country of lower rainfall, poorer quality soils and country that has a lot of trees and bush growing on them? It appears as though you would be well advised to get out into the bush and educate yourself somewhat more before making these statements. Also what are the details of the compensation payable to all of the legal and legitimate businesses associated with live exporting if these businesses are closed down? It is high time that details of this are put on the table.
angry australian
4/02/2015 6:20:55 AM

Yes, Lee, to farmers a major consideration is money. They don't want to rely on government handouts like some to feed, clothe and educate their families. They are prepared to live in often remote parts of Australia to provide protein to the world. We certainly don't need to be lectured by idealists who probably rely on the taxes and export incomes generated by farmers for their lifestyle.
4/02/2015 6:30:37 AM

Lee, you are a dill who knows nothing at all about live exporting. You start poorly by talking of "life export", what is that? Then you rattle on about the grain to meat conversion ratio which has very little to do with feedlotting in many of the countries that live cattle are exported to as in most of these places the cattle are finished on feedlot rations consisting of by-products from other agricultural production which would otherwise be waste and I'm pretty sure even you would baulk at eating these waste by-products before they have been reconstituted through cattle into meat.
4/02/2015 6:47:25 AM

Starving people don't have the money to buy imported beef. Having another source of protein makes no difference whatever. Exporters do it for the money so pretending they are altruistic is ridiculous.
4/02/2015 8:57:13 AM

Lee - Atlas Shrugged.
4/02/2015 10:57:37 AM

".. it (live export) is also acting responsibly by striving to meet community animal welfare expectations.."? What a lot of spin and falsehood! Globalisation of animal welfare is a shifting to downward levels. Starving people won't be helped by the trade. Only the wealthy can afford meat, and it's about trying to break down legislation and restrictions. Exporting live animals is all about lucrative $$ at the cost of ethics and good stewardship.
Ruth Weston
4/02/2015 12:40:42 PM

Well said Lee. Animal Agriculture is one of the major causes of global warming and as you say the grain fed to animals could actually provide food for third world countries. So by eating meat we are actually being cruel to the third world. People do not need as much protein as they think anyway. This is all well researched and mainstream information now if you look on the net. Animals Australia is a well informed organisation that is trying to stop CRUELTY and EXPLOITATION of other species. Perhaps we could have a further discussion when the pro live export people have read their website.
1 | 2 | 3  |  next >


Screen name *
Email address *
Remember me?
Comment *


light grey arrow
I'm one of the people who want marijuana to be legalized, some city have been approved it but
light grey arrow
#blueysmegacarshowandcruise2019 10 years on Daniels Ute will be apart of another massive cause.
light grey arrow
Australia's live animal trade is nothing but a blood stained industry that suits those who