Live exporters welcome welfare push
Live exporters have welcomed $8.3 million in Federal funding to implement a new animal welfare standards system in Australia.
The Commonwealth has committed more than $2 million a year for four years to implement the new Livestock Global Assurance Program.
It builds on the current Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System and aims to improve industry compliance with stringent animal welfare regulatory requirements.
Piloting for the new program started in 2015, four years after ESCAS was implemented in the wake of the live export ban.
Australian Live Export Council chief executive Simon Westaway said funds would help implement the program across Australia’s $2 billion live export industry.
“Our industry continues to back our world-leading approach to animal welfare outcomes in the international livestock trade,” he said.
“This funding allocation confirms the Australian Government shares that vision and commitment to improved animal welfare outcomes and a more resilient livestock export trade.”
ESCAS currently implements animal welfare standards, administered by the Department of Agriculture and Food. But the new program will create a global conformity assessment program for livestock exports.
WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan said it was an important step that introduced enforceable minimum standards for animal care and management.
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