Live export ban deals big blow
A TEMPORARY ban on live exports to Indonesia will cripple graziers in the Ipswich region and fail to prevent animal cruelty abroad – industry experts said yesterday.
Harrisville cattle farmer and livestock auctioneer Peter Hayes said yesterday’s decision by the federal government to stop all cattle exports to Indonesia until it was satisfied appropriate animal welfare safeguards were in place would “severely impact” graziers.
“All the cattle in the Northern Territory and northern Queensland that were sent abroad will have to come back and be sold here so that will affect us locally,” Mr Hayes said.
“It’s not a good thing for local graziers because it will put pressure on the markets and cause prices to drop.
“It’s going to cost the Australian economy a lot of money. For our own economy we need to have this fixed as soon as possible but we can not go on with those inhumane practices.”
The live export industry pumps about $1 billion into the national economy each year.
The issue of live exports hit the headlines after an episode of ABC’s Four Corners program showed footage of barbaric treatment of cows exported to Indonesia.
“I’m a grazier and an auctioneer and I was very taken aback by what I saw,” Mr Hayes said.
“We definitely don’t agree with how they are treated.”
Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann said he supported the decision to stop exporting live beef.
“I think the government has done the right thing,” Mr Neumann said.
“Live cattle is an important industry in Australia but we need to make sure that animals are treated humanely.”
Dr Patricia Peterson, who will run as an independent in the seat of Ipswich at the next state election and who organised a live export rally in Ipswich last weekend, said the temporary ban was a stunt.
“The government isn’t listening to the arguments put forward by opponents of the live export trade; it is merely attempting to dodge a lethal political bullet,” Dr Peterson said.
“The government has known for decades that our livestock are being tortured to death when they arrive at their overseas destinations and have turned a blind eye to it.”