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Live Exports

June 01, 2017

In government, Labor implemented the Export Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) – a regulatory regime that requires exporters have a plan to treat animals humanely and provides monitoring and auditing. Since then industry has trained over 7,500 people in Asia, the Middle East, North Africa and Europe in approved animal welfare practices.

Protecting animal welfare and boosting agricultural profitability aren’t competing aims – they support one another.

The growing demand for high quality food produced in an ethical way means Australia’s agricultural producers must embrace the highest animal welfare standards to stay internationally competitive.

Ahead of the 2016 Federal Election, Labor released a six point strategy:

  • Labor committed to a review of the ESCAS regulatory framework– including its sanctions – to determine whether it is working as effectively as it needs to in order to balance a strong live export industry with protecting animal welfare.
  • Labor also committed to appoint an independent Inspector-General of Animal Welfare, who would have responsibility for overseeing the implementation of laws concerning live export, investigating alleged breaches, and providing independent advice to the Federal Government on reforms where the need for these arises.
  • Work with the States and Territories to establish an Office of Animal Welfare to provide independent, rigorous regulatory oversight of animal welfare in Australia.
  • Renew the Australian Animal Welfare Strategy.
  • Provide more transparency and accountability.
  • Ban animal testing for cosmetics within Australia and the importation or sale of new products tested on animals overseas.

Federal Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce and the Turnbull Government have refused to commit to any of these important steps to further improving raising animal welfare standards in the live export industry and even abolishing the Animal Welfare Advisory Committee the standing committee on the primary industry. 

Labor will continue to argue the case for their adoption of our policies.