RSPCA calls on Government to support alternatives to live export
The RSPCA is calling on the Federal Government and the opposition party to support a new report outlining alternatives to the live export trade. The report released today by the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) highlights the many benefits of transitioning away from live export and into the greater use of domestic processing systems.
The report comes just days after thousands of Australians took to the streets to protest against the continuation of the live animal export trade, prompted by the horrendous events that recently took place in Pakistan.
RSPCA Chief Scientist Dr Bidda Jones said this report showed that the installment of a northern Australian cattle processing facility would be hugely beneficial to Australia, both financially and in improving the welfare of Australian animals.
“In the last few weeks we’ve once again seen Australian animals suffering abroad because of this inherently cruel trade,” said Dr Jones.
“The regulatory system (Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System) implemented by the government is clearly unable to properly protect Australian animals from cruelty – this report outlines viable alternatives to live exports and I strongly encourage Minister Ludwig and the opposition to seriously consider its recommendations.
The report, which was written for WSPA by independent consultants ACIL Tasman, found that a processing facility in northern Australia that slaughtered 400,000 head of cattle could contribute an additional $204 million per annum to the regional economy and create an additional 1,300 jobs.
“Economically, it just makes sense to slaughter animals here in Australia - this report is proof of that,” said Dr Jones.
“By keeping animals here we can ensure that their welfare is being protected right through the chain from paddock to plate – it’s clear that the same can’t be guaranteed when they are sent abroad.
“It’s time for the government to actually take note of independent advice on the economics of the live cattle trade and start implementing changes that will truly ensure the welfare of Australian animals.”
WSPA report summary: http://www.wspa.org.au/Images/TransitionReportSummary_tcm30-31304.pdf#false
Media contact – Elise Meakin 0419 748 907
10 October 2012