Should Australia cease from exporting live sheep and cattle?

Australia must stop exporting live sheep and cattle as it is an inhumane practice and a traumatic experience for all animals involved. Every year, millions of animals are shipped from Australian ports, millions are slaughtered whilst fully conscious and thousands die horrendous deaths at sea. Innocent animals are being inhumanely tortured and abused. The live export trade ruthlessly disregards all forms of animal welfare. Therefore, Australia should cease from the cruel practice of exporting live sheep and cattle as there are many other alternatives which provide a myriad of positive outcomes.

Recently, an episode of 60 minutes has captured public attention and has sparked outrage as they aired video footage from Animals Australia, revealing the fate of many Australian animals in the live export trade. The footage showed around 64 thousand sheep on their way to the Middle East. The boat was overcrowded, and the animals were crammed together, standing in their own faeces. We witness the conditions animals suffer through as they are shipped across the world, crushed into tiny pens just to maximise profits. Some can’t even reach food and water as they are forced to bear the unbearable heat. A mortality rate of up to 2% for sheep and 1% for cattle is apparently considered ‘acceptable’ according to the Australian government. It is an absolute violation of animal rights, the ways the animals are being treated is absolutely sickening. The livestock are handled and slaughtered in ways that are not only illegal in Australia but in ways that would shock most people.

Imagine if you were a poor animal trapped in a filthy ship for days, everywhere you look you see your friends suffering. You live in cramped conditions with poor ventilation. You are prodded, kicked and herded into unwashed decks, forced to stand for hours in your own urine and faeces. You choke, and your eyes burn because of the corrosive ammonia in the air. Your heart races as you desperately gasp for oxygen. The insufferable heat withers your body nearly cooking you alive. Appalling right? This is what the animals on board live export ships experience. And even if they make it out alive, surviving animals are dragged out of the ships and thrown onto trucks to then be cut through the throat. Clearly, the live exportation of animals must stop.

The live export industry may be huge, and it may bring in 2 billion dollars for the Australian economy, however, there will be more worth to our country if the animals were processed in Australia in a more humane way sparing them the long and torturous journeys. There are countless options for the humanely treatment of animals that will also benefit farmers, jobs and the economy. The alternative would be to build new abattoirs in Australia to facilitate the processing of livestock. According to the RSPCA “, a sheep processed domestically for meat is worth 20 percent more to the Australian economy than a live export sheep”. This is due to the potential to add value from processing in Australia. A report by ACIL Tasman revealed that for every $100 of output created by Western Australia’s live export industry, the gross state product is $81 higher, however, it is 101.50 higher when the meat is processed locally. Transitioning the cattle industry to an exclusively chilled meat trade would also ensure that all animals are slaughtered and processed in Australia under our regulations.

While there are still people who would prefer animals to not be killed at all, the substitution of live export for domestic Australian meat processing would mean compassionate treatment and the humane slaughter of all Australian animals. According to the Sydney Morning Herald “A phase-out of the cruel live sheep export trade will have long-term benefits for the Australian economy if the trade is replaced with chilled meat exports, and an increase in processed meat exports will discourage importing countries from seeking live imports elsewhere”.

Overall, the live export industry is not only cruel, but it also undermines our economy. Let’s work together to end this cruel belittlement of innocent animals. Without change, millions of animals will continue to suffer the deleterious effects of the live export trade every single year. Australia must shut down the live export industry as it is inhumane and a harrowing experience for thousands of animals. There are many other alternatives that are better and can spare the poor animals from their tortuous journeys.

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Thanks !

Thanks for sharing this, you are awesome !

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