Grain Producers Australia has supported other peak farm industry representative groups by co-signing a letter to the Prime Minister, raising shared concerns about the phase-out of live sheep exports and urging the Federal Government to reconsider its policy decision.
GPA also urges the Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Agriculture Minister, Murray Watt, and Trade Minister, Don Farrell, to urgently visit and engage with producers and communities impacted by this ban, in person.
The letter signed by GPA Chair and WA producer Barry Large, who also runs sheep on his mixed farming property in Western Australia, is consistent with the clear views expressed in GPA’s submission to the public consultation process.
Many GPA members – especially in WA – are also livestock producers and already living with the social and economic consequences of this government’s move to end this world-leading trade, such as vastly reduced sheep prices.
The version of 'social license' used to 'justify' this ban is also politically distorted and that problem needs to be urgently addressed so producers have clarity and certainty in future.
Excerpts from GPA Submission
‘GPA vigorously disagrees with the Government’s policy for Australia to withdraw from the live sheep export market – especially when our nation is widely regarded as world-leading in animal welfare standards and our involvement in this trade contributes to lifting standards in export countries, with sustained investment of government funding and grower levies. These markets will continue to source livestock supplied by other countries where no such welfare standards and oversight systems apply, such as the tracking and traceability provided by ESCAS. Given mortality rates are at record lows, this decision is counterintuitive to the core values on animal welfare and the role of food producers, shared by the community.
Social license considerations are of key concern for GPA members, with fears this government ban sets a dangerous precedent which emboldens other extreme activist groups targeting the cropping sector, such as those that ideologically oppose the use of fertilisers, pesticides, biotechnology etc. despite already being heavily regulated and/or demonstrated to be safe, including with objective scientific evidence.’
Further details on GPA’s position HERE