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Live Sheep Trade Ban Bill Passes Senate, Threatens Industry

2 July 2024

Livestock SA has condemned the Australian Government's legislation to ban Australia's live sheep by sea export trade from 1 May 2028, which passed the Senate late on Monday night.

Livestock SA President, Joe Keynes labelled the ill-conceived policy and the process that has taken place to ram it through parliament as one of the most profoundly deaf acts from government towards the livestock industry and agriculture more broadly for some time.

“Shutting down an important sheep market that leads the world in animal welfare and provides much-needed flexibility during challenging times such as drought and industry adjustment is nonsensical,” Mr Keynes said.

“The animal welfare and lack of social licence grounds that the policy was built on have been disproven time and again.”

“The inadequacies of the measly $107 million adjustment package for Western Australia were clearly made during the hasty House of Representatives Committee Inquiry, yet no amendments made.”

“There has also been no recognition of the wide-ranging impacts this legislation will have on farmers and regional communities in other jurisdictions.”

“For example, more than 670,000 head of sheep have been trucked across the South Australian border in the first five months of this year. This 460 per cent increase on last year is the start of things to come and the real impacts of this must be recognised and addressed.”

“1 July 2024 has set a very alarming precedent for every agricultural industry, and other non-agricultural industries that may be unpopular to an unquantified element of society.”

“It demonstrates that science, performance, economics, international relationships, and impacts to industry and regional communities will be overlooked in favour of ideological agendas.”

“To develop good policies and associated legislation that will enable us to continue feeding and clothing the nation and people around the world, governments need to listen to the advice of industry experts, not anti-industry activists."


Media Contact:

Hannah Trevilyan, Communications and Membership Manager, 08 8297 2299

Published: 2 July 2024