The following is my latest piece regarding the live export trade – it was published today on the Humane Chain website:
By Reuben Brand
Pressure is mounting for Australia to make a stand and put an end to live animal export as the Government of Uganda takes the lead and announces a total ban of the trade.
As the Mayor of Fremantle in WA calls for the live export trade to be phased out over the next five years, the Government of Uganda leads the charge and will soon implement a total ban on live animal export. The shift in policy is a direct need to create more jobs and stimulate the Ugandan economy by value adding the animals locally.
During a press conference, Bright Rwamirama, Uganda’s Minister of State for Animal Industry, announced the decision and gave the following statement.
“We will very soon ban the exportation of live animals in a move to promote value addition and other animal bi-products in the country. By doing that we will also create employment opportunities.”
Rwamirama also announced the construction of a new abattoir and meat processing facility in the central region to ensure all meat products meet export standards.
On average Uganda exports 500 head of cattle, 400 sheep and 600 goats every day to neighbouring countries and to the Middle East. This shift in policy will see a boom in local industry and the creation of much needed jobs.
Australia needs to follow Uganda’s example when it comes to live export, as every boat load of livestock that leaves this country takes with it Australian jobs.
The Mayor of Fremantle, Brad Pettitt, is not too far behind and has called for live export to be completely phased out over the next five years. Mr Pettitt said live animal exports are cruel and Fremantle council needs to take the lead on this issue.
“Despite the best intentions and the best efforts from the industry, it’s clear that animal welfare is often compromised.”
“In the 21st century, the live sheep trade is something that I think we need to be phasing away from. The idea that we just see this trade continuing indefinitely is not acceptable,” he said.
A resolution accepted by Fremantle council’s strategic and general services committee called for live animal exports to be completely phased out and replaced with a chilled meat trade.
The Australian Government stubbornly continues to support the archaic live export trade – how long will it take the rest of our politicians to stand up for what is right? And how many other countries need to lead the way before Australia finally follows suit?