Report exposes more deaths at sea
The Live Export Shipboard Performance Report revealed that more than 36,000 sheep, cattle and goats died while being transported overseas for slaughter in 2008. It's not a quick or simple death - they died from such things as starvation, salmonellosis, injury and pneumonia. The sad reality is that Australia's live exporters measure their success by the number of animals still standing at the end of the sea voyage. The fact is that tens of thousands of animals that embark on these journeys out of Australia every year will not walk off at the other end.
For them at least, the ordeal is over.
For the others, it's just the beginning.
Those that do disembark are often handled, transported and slaughtered in a way that would neither be legal nor tolerated in Australia.
Don't believe the live export lobby's claims that this is an entrenched Australian tradition. It isn't. Live exports represent just another market opportunity. But it is a market opportunity that comes at a cost to animal welfare and to Australia's reputation. There are alternatives that have proven to be far more lucrative than the trade in live animals. Our meat exports are seven times more valuable to the economy and they keep jobs here in Australia.
Ending live animal exports is achievable; we just need a government with the political courage to make it happen.
Listen to ABC Radio Australia interview about this story
For more information visit our Live Export campaign page