The Australian Livestock Exporters’ Council (ALEC) will continue to work closely with the Department and exporters to ensure the operation of the trade can continue as the situation evolves and measures are put in place to manage the outbreak and containment of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus).
“The challenge facing the industry with two-weeks of self-isolation will be in being able to secure Australian Accredited Veterinarians (AAV) and accredited stock-people to keep the trade operating at the standard we pride ourselves on. ALEC is working closely with all stakeholders at this time to ensure appropriate measures are in place and the trade can continue to operate.” says Mark Harvey-Sutton ALEC CEO.
The ports where stock-people are unable to disembark are returning to Australia onboard the vessel. The wellbeing of the crew and animal welfare is not being compromised with this current situation and exporters will continue to adapt and prepare as required.
“ALEC's understanding is that stock-people are not disembarking from vessels in high risk areas and are required to self-isolate for two weeks, this self-isolation can commence once leaving the port for the return journey back to Australia.” says Mr Harvey-Sutton.
“ALEC is working with exporters and vessel owners to understand what processes are in place regarding pre-boarding due diligence, hygiene for the voyage and additional measures implemented when coming into contact with one another on the vessel to support the industry in managing COVID-19.” says Mr Harvey-Sutton
The industry remains committed to the highest standard of animal welfare, ensuring all staff and crew are well cared for and will continue to work with the broader Red Meat Industry, Government and our global partners to continue to safely provide protein and food security.
“It is of paramount importance that we are able to reassure our trading partners that we continue to be a trusted and reliable supplier of livestock, capable of satisfying their food security needs even in a time of upheaval.” says Mr Harvey-Sutton.
"Our global markets are relying on the Live Export industry to support their food supply chains and the importance of live export is increasing given the reductions in other forms of transportation. We have a responsibility to continue to support our regional neighbours and their food production systems at this critical time." says Mr Harvey-Sutton.
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