THE live sheep and cattle export industry’s biennial LIVEXchange conference got underway in Perth this morning, with more than 300 delegates in attendance, including industry stakeholders from China, Indonesia and the Middle East.
Market forces and livestock prices have limited sheep, cattle and goat exports in the past year, but Livecorp chairman David Galvin told delegates during his opening address this morning that the industry should be proud of its animal welfare developments, and the impact it has had on the treatment of animals from other countries within ESCAS supply chains.
He called on the RSPCA and Animals Australia to abandon their policies to cease the trade, and instead work with Livecorp on improving global animal welfare within the sector.
WA Minister for Regional Development, Agriculture and Food Alannah MacTiernan addressed the conference, recognising that live export is an important part of WA’s livestock industry. She supported Mr Galvin’s call for animal activists to support better welfare standards around the world and acknowledged the effort the industry had made on animal welfare.
But she said there was a need to continue for the industry to be prepared to recognise the need to talk frankly about how it is perceived by the community to guard against the re-emergent of anti-industry sentiment.
- Sheep Central editor Terry Sim is in Perth for the conference. More reports out of LIVEXchange later today and tomorrow.