The 111th annual Pastoralists and Graziers Association of Western Australia’s convention has been told Federal Agricultural Minister David Littleproud has to improve communication with sheep meat producers.
The live sheep export industry has been in limbo now for four months as the Morrison Government tries to be all things to all people. As a result, sheep farmers are suffering.
Agriculture Minister David Littleproud must release the Moss Review into live exports now. The report into the culture, capability and investigative powers of the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources was due on the 24th August, but it remains under wraps and its delay is being used as an excuse to do nothing.
The Government has not held any meaningful discussions with farmers about transition options and assistance.
Minister Littleproud even confirmed in media comments that he agreed a transition for live export sheepmeat producers to a sector based here in Australia is possible.
The Government feigned shock and horror when the Awassi Express failings were exposed and claimed it would be guided by the science, but has since shown little urgency in finding solutions.
The fact is, the science is in and, based on that evidence, the live sheep export trade cannot continue. The focus must be on an immediate ban on the Northern Hemisphere summer trade and a transition away from live sheep exports to maximise value-adding opportunities and jobs here in Australia.
Labor believes the live sheep export trade does not meet community expectations on animal welfare.
The Government must stand up and provide transparency and give assurance it has an orderly plan to transition sheep farmers and other supply chain participants out of the live sheep trade.