The Australian Livestock Exporters Council said today that 1 July 2024 will forever be marked as a black day for Australian agriculture. However, CEO Mark Harvey said it also marked the last day that governments could wilfully ignore facts and evidence and choose activism.

“The debate in the Senate last night was extremely hard to watch given the blatant lies put forward by the Government and the Greens about the live sheep trade.”

“There were repeated falsehoods put forward about the animal welfare conditions on vessels, the economic value of the trade. Some Senators openly mocked the Agriculture sector’s campaign against this policy – all cut and pasted from activist talking points. At no stage in the debate could they reference an industry body supportive of the Bill which is truly telling.”

“The most galling part of all, was the patronising insistence from government Senators that this policy presented an “opportunity” for WA sheep farmers and our trading partners. This has been repeatedly refuted by industry and it demonstrated a wilful ignorance by the Government towards the facts and the devastating impacts of this Bill. This government showed they simply do not care about Western Australian agriculture.”

“However, we hope governments of all persuasions mark 1 July 2024 as the last day they will make such a mistake again. We have consistently said this policy, if implemented, would be crossing a red line,” he said.

With the rushed and arrogant manner in which this Bill has been passed, the government has now crossed that line and the agriculture sector is left with little choice, but to fight in a manner that has not been seen before! The sector is mobilised, united and furious.”



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