How big is the livestock industry in Australia?


How big is the livestock industry in Australia?

Recently, the media have reported that the livestock exported to Indonesia were mistreated. Footage from media sources has shown that the livestock, particularly the cattle, have been treated inhumanely, prompting the Australian Government to halt livestock exportation to the country. Indonesian livestock authorities were reported to have mistreated the livestock imported from Australia. The cattle were severely beaten and whipped before being taken to the Indonesian abattoirs for slaughter. This forced the Australian Agriculture minister, Joe Ludwig, to issue a notice that saw the suspension of all live cattle in Indonesia. The rest resulted from media coverage of the subjection of animals to brutality. The footage revealed crude methods of slaughtering the animals and subjecting them to harsh treatment. This is the first such move since 1996, when the Australian Government banned the exportation of sheep to Egypt after reports of mistreatment of the animals.

Australian officials in charge of livestock exportation said they would lift the ban on exporting livestock to Indonesia. This was after a controlled system that would ensure livestock welfare was implemented. The ban is said to have massively affected the three hundred and eighty million dollars per year industry.

The six-month suspension of livestock exportation was necessary to implement the systems, ensuring that the livestock was trwastwas humanely. The Australian agriculture minister, Joe Ludwig, said that the cattle export industry should be built on the ability to safeguard the welfare of the animals. The Australian Government’s objective is to support a sustainable livestock export trade that will ensure the animal’s welfare (Trewin, 2011).

The world organization of animal health (OIE) is an organization that is responsible for the improvement of animal health worldwide. The policies by the OIE provide details about the humane treatment of livestock during transport and slaughter. The OIE animal welfare regulations and requirements dictate that the livestock for export should be handled humanely and list four livestock transport standards. The standards are transporting animals by sea, land, and air and slaughtering animals. The Australian Government said that the export of livestock should be consistent with the obligations of Australia’s international trade rules, which ensure the animal’s health and welfare (The New York Times 2011).

During the suspension, the Australian Government developed a regulatory framework to ensure the humane handling of livestock in other countries. Some of the inhumane practices carried against the livestock included hoisting conscious animals by a leg and ineffective and inappropriate use of stunning equipment. Severing the spinal cord using a puntilla and inappropriate use of pointed implements to try to move animals was also considered inhumane (Coorey & Allard, 2011). Other inhumane practices included moving animals over the top of recumbent animals in a race and slaughtering animals given other animals waiting for slaughter allowing insufficient time between the cut and further movement of the animal.


The Meat and Livestock Australian group company announced that livestock would only be supplied to the abattoirs that met the standards of the World Organisation for Animal Health. This was because the majority of the slaughterhouses in Indonesia did not meet the required standards for livestock health and welfare (History Department at UIC.n.d.). This was a deliberate move by Australian officials to oversee that the inhumane handling of livestock in Indonesia was halted.
















The New York Times (2011). Australia Suspends Live Cattle Exports to Indonesia. Retrieved on 24th October 2011 from        ><

Trewin R (2011). Australian–Indonesian livestock trade: Ban the bans. Retrieved on 24th October 2011 from ><

History Department at UIC. (n.d.). Retrieved on 24th October 2011 from ><

Coorey P & Allard T. (2011). Live cattle ban to stay. Retrieved from on 24th October 2011               ><

Meat & Livestock Australia (n.d.). Livestock exports. Retrieved on 24th October 2011 from ><

Sydney R. M. (2011). Stuck in cattle class. Retrieved on 24th October 2011 from ><

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