SPA Chair Chris Mirams says sheep producers are unwavering in their commitment to the highest animal welfare standards domestically and expects that this commitment extends to the export of sheep as well.
“Since the footage was aired on 60 Minutes, there have been substantial changes made by exporters, which SPA wholeheartedly supports. Exporters are committing to reduced summer stocking densities, placing independent observers on the voyages and continuing to use the latest science to measure animal welfare.
“The McCarthy Review has been instigated to provide evidence-based advice for industry on where improvements could be made.
“SPA has committed to waiting until the review takes place and then discussing any recommendations made with its members and other stakeholders to determine the best path forward.”
SPA is deeply disturbed at the Federal Opposition’s call to ban the trade.
“The livestock industry is still feeling the economic and social impacts of the devastating decision made in 2011 to halt live exports. The pain and distrust is still fresh in the minds of farming communities and our international trading partners,” he said.
“SPA is calling for a calm and meaningful response from decision-makers.
“The trade is a major component of many producers’ businesses, regional communities and workers who rely on the industry for their livelihood.
“We have an industry filled with professional and innovative producers building their farms and contributing to vibrant rural and regional communities. Decision-makers must think in terms of how banning the trade will impact them.
“All decisions regarding how the trade will be conducted in future must be underpinned by robust research on long-term economic and social impacts.”