Cattle to Indonesia
The RSPCA believes that the live export of animals for slaughter should be replaced with an increased trade in chilled and frozen meat products.
Australia has exported a total of 6.4 million cattle to Indonesia over the past 20 years. In 2010, 60% of live cattle exports (521,002 cattle) went to Indonesia: these cattle are sourced from properties in northern Australia and are not used to human handling. Rope casting, where cattle are forcibly tripped onto their sides, followed by slaughter using multiple throat cuts while animals are fully conscious, are all normal practice in Indonesia. Evidence documented in early 2010 revealed Australian cattle being subjected to torture techniques such as tail twisting, tail breaking and eye gouging in an effort to move animals into restraint boxes or down onto the slaughter floor. The restraint box facilitates the roping and casting (tripping an animal onto its side) of Australian cattle and is, in itself, an inhumane device (see RSPCA's analysis of the restraint box).
Upon arrival in Indonesia
- Cattle are offloaded in a country with no enforceable animal welfare laws.
- They are feed-lotted for further fattening.
- They may be on-sold to individuals or merchants.
- Cattle may be subjected to rough, inhumane handling.
- They are slaughtered by having their throat cut, without being stunned first.
- They are killed in ways that would be illegal in Australia.
Exporting live animals for slaughter is cruel.
The return to the Australian economy of cattle exports to Indonesia was around $440 million in 2009-2010. In contrast, our global beef exports in the same period were worth over $4.5 billion.
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