What a brainless idea to have a live ex trade to China using southern Australian cattle....yep....this doesnt help all those northern rangeland pastoralists.....cattle have to be from from Blue-Tongue free zone and HGP free etc.....all of which means southern cattle. One wonders where they are all going to come from.....perhaps Australians are expected to go vegetarian to support China's request for beef???
However, equally of concern is the fact that the deal requires that the veterinary supervision of all consignments is to be by a Chinese Government veterinarian, a veterinarian that is highly unlikely to have a degree eligible for registration in Australia (their basic vet degree is 3 years!). Why arent we insulted that Australian veterinarians are not considered good enough? There can only be two conclusions here: 1) Aussie vets are incompetent or 2) Aussie vets, at least in the live ex trade, cannot be trusted (corrupted?). Either way, to have Chinese veterinarians practising as veterinarians in this country on our animals is illegal.
How stupid of VALE. Here we are, having shown multiple breaches of welfare law and export law, painstakingly dissecting out voyage reports and labouring over scientific peer-reviewed papers to get this trade stopped, when all we really needed to do was to support gay marriage. What a strategic mistake we have made!
Of course, one wonders what the US will think. Apparently, they are our next big live-ex market....or perhaps not....as apparently we have to adhere to the marriage laws of our trading partners for live ex to go ahead.
The industry has acknowledged they a need social licence to operate. Well if so, they better start looking at what the public want. VALE commissioned an independent poll, surveying 1000 Australian respondents, both metropolitan and regional. 59% of Australians disapproved of live export. 83% believed that existing Australian animal welfare laws should apply to the live export trade. 72% of them believed there should be mandatory penalties when exporters break the law This is a very clear signal that the Australian public demand better welfare laws and protection with an agency that can enforce those laws, something that the ESCAS review shows does not currently happen. The poll also showed that 82% of the public, like VALE and the Australian Veterinary Association, believed there should be independent vets on every live export voyage ……and that included 76% of the people who approved of live export. Interestingly, there was no significant difference between town and country dwellers in their responses.
Oh and if you want to join in on a non-random poll....we seem to have started a trend.
ASEL 2.6 Standard for land transport of livestock for export
S2.16 Livestock must be checked to ensure that they are evenly distributed and
remain fit to travel:
(b) within 30–60 minutes of commencement of the journey;
(c) at least every 2–3 hours as road conditions warrant;
VALE have tailed plenty of trucks (tedious, time consuming and expensive) and can vouch that this definitely does NOT happen routinely.....but again.....its only ASEL....not followed....not policed!
ASEL Vessel Preparation and Loading 4.2 Required outcomes:
(1) Livestock are healthy, fit to travel and comply with importing country requirements.
If the escaped steer shown on the Animals Australia website was really loaded and not rejected, then this is a clear breach of ASEL. But .....what does ASEL matter. Legislation is there to be broken and other escaped cattle have been swum in and been loaded....so there is a clear legal precedent...namely, that no-one is going to observe the law or prosecute its infringements.