A new website, named ‘Live Export Facts’, was launched last Friday by the National Farmers’ Federation, Sheep Producers Australia and WA Farmers.
The website’s intention is to share the facts behind Australia’s livestock export industry offering subscriptions to interested stakeholders as well as sections such as ‘meet the farmers and their communities’, questions and answers, livestock export news and ‘get the facts’.
Once entering ‘get the facts’ by the press of a button, readers will be navigated to questions and answers that will teach people about the industry such as “why does Australia export livestock” and “how are we improving animal welfare”.
Five farmers and regional community figures share their stories through Youtube videos on the importance of sheep exports and their vision for the industry’s sustainable future.
One of those is Bindi Murray, a third generation farmer who runs 15,000 sheep on 7000 hectares near the small town of Woodanilling in the Western Australian wheatbelt.
In her Youtube presentation on the website, Ms Murray says a ban on the industry is not the answer and she wouldn’t support a trade that she thought didn’t share the same values as her.
“Almost every part of my job as a sheep producer is caring for my livestock and ensuring their quality of life is the best it can be,” Ms Murray said.
“It is our responsibility to ensure that these welfare standards are upheld post farm gate.
“As a farmer I want to see change driven by science within the sheep export sector.
“I want to see cultural change, where the conditions on export vessels are driven by what is in the best interest of the sheep.”
Wagin sheep and crop farmer, Clayton South, said a ban of sheep exports would have a devastating impact on the economy and social fabric of his small community.
Although he does not sell sheep directly to WA exporters, Mr South said the live trade underpinned the WA sheep market.