WAFarmers President Tony York has deemed the Federal Government’s plans to impose fines and jail terms to company directors who fail to act to prevent live export animal cruelty to be an opportunity to further safeguard the future of the trade.
“We support Minister Littleproud’s comments that company directors would be severely punished if they preside over acts of animal cruelty, as exporters must be held to account as much as other stakeholders,” Mr York said.
“That said, given the primary onus is on the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources as the regulator to uphold animal welfare standards and prevent any repeat of the Awassi Express incident, we think is a bold move from the Minister to implement penalties that could move further up the chain to his department.
“We have continually called for measures to be put in place to stop the cruelty, not the trade, as the alternative would destroy the livelihoods of thousands of farmers across the nation and have the potential to decimate regional communities.
“We do see these penalties as being an additional safeguard for the future of the industry, and wonder whether any additional suggestions will be put forward in the McCarthy review to further discipline those who fail to act to prevent live export animal cruelty.”
It is believed Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud will announce details of the penalties in the coming weeks.
Findings from the Federal Government’s into the live sheep export industry during northern hemisphere summer conditions are expected next week.
All media requests must be directed to WAFarmers Media and Communications Officer Melanie Dunn on (08) 9486 2100 or [email protected].