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Govt fails to back animal welfare, provides $85m for live export trade

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 21 Oct 2011

Greens NSW Senator and Animal Welfare spokesperson Lee Rhiannon has criticised the federal government's failure to end the live export trade and called on the government to cancel its financial support to the industry.

Yesterday at the Foreign Affairs and Trade Estimates in response to Senator Rhiannon’s questioning it was revealed that this year the government has provided $85 million in financial backing for the live export trade.

"The live export trade is inherently cruel and should be stopped," Senator Rhiannon said.

“There is huge public support for the live export trade to end and I believe people would be quite shocked to hear that public money is being used to expand this trade.

“The Export Finance Insurance Corporation should not be promoting and financially supporting the expansion of the live export trade.

“It is disappointing that the government has not used the Farmer Review as an opportunity to investigate how the trade can be phased out and in the interim introduce mandatory stunning.

"While auditing individual cattle sent overseas sets up a controlled supply chain, animals will still suffer extreme cruelty without the introduction of stunning.

“I have been informed that cattle that have not been stunned can remain conscious for up to two minutes after their throat is cut.

"Pre-slaughter stunning should be mandatory at all abattoirs where Australian livestock is slaughtered.

"It is to the credit of Animals Australia and many other animal welfare groups that these issues are being addressed,” Senator Rhiannon said.

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