Radical animal activist group renames in bid to regain charity status

Aussie Farms renames as Farm Transparency Project

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Aussie Farms changed its name to the Farm Transparency Project, however the organisation remains identical, with the same executive director and the same objectives targeting the animal agriculture industry.

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POLITICIANS have called for authorities to maintain their hard-line stance on a radical animal activist group, despite the organisation changing its name.

In November last year, Aussie Farms had its charity status revoked after creating a website that targeting producers across the country, with a map of farm locations published on Facebook, following a campaign by the Australian Community Media ag mastheads.

The group has now changed its name to the Farm Transparency Project, however the organisation remains identical, with the same executive director and the same objectives targeting the animal agriculture industry.

Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud said he had already moved swiftly to ensure the group does not regain its charity status.

"They have no place in our society and I have formally requested the Attorney-General treat the Farm Transparency Project the same as Aussie Farms has been," Mr Littleproud said.

"No matter what these groups call themselves they are abhorrent in facilitating the intimidation of Australian farming families."

However, Farm Transparency Project chief executive Chris Delforce said "at this stage" the group does not intend to apply for charity status, as he suspects it "would again be challenged by pressure from the animal agriculture sector".

"We continue to operate as a charity, simply without tax concessions," Mr Delforce said.

"We felt that the name Farm Transparency Project better conveys our purpose as an organisation. The new name also paves the way for a greater international scope and reach."

However, NSW Ag Minister Adam Marshall wasn't buying it.

"The whole purpose of re-branding is to continue their campaign to shut down agriculture in Australia," Mr Marshall said.

"People are entitled to have different views, and I respect the views of people who don't agree with certain farming practises - but there is a way to go about that.

"These guys are semi-militant in their harassment of farmers, who are law abiding citizens just trying to put food on the table for families."

Mr Delforce said his organisation's purpose was to "bring transparency to industries that depend on secrecy" and reduce the suffering of animals with the ag sector.

When asked if he would remove the controversial map if it would help the organisation gain charity status, Mr Delforce said "the map, as a tool for transparency and consumer awareness, is of much greater importance than those concessions"

Victorian MP Bev McArthur said any organisation that promote illegal behaviour such as trespassing could not be allowed to take advantage of charity tax concessions.

"Aussie Farms are an extremist organisation that encourage criminal trespass, livestock theft and breaches of biosecurity plans on the premises of agricultural enterprises," Ms McArthur said.

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