Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud has called for calm following an incident in Harvey, WA.
After arguing with vegan activists filming from a car out the front of his home, seemingly on the road, a dairy farmer discharged a shotgun, though not in the direction of the activists.
This follows the launch of the “Aussie Farms” vegan activist website which contains what Minister Littleproud has called an “attack map for activists” listing hundreds of family farms and their addresses, often with incorrect details about their farming operation.
“I call for all to remain calm and respectful,” Minister Littleproud said.
“Farmers have a right to farm without being harassed. These people are just producing our food and should be left alone to do so.
“Family farms are people’s homes. Children live in these homes. Farmers are good people just trying to live their lives, raise their kids and feed our nation.
“I’m genuinely concerned there will be an incident in which someone be seriously hurt or worse.
“Differences between sections of the vegan and farm communities will not be solved with confrontation.
“I again ask the owners of the “Aussie Farms” website to pull down its farm map. It’s an attack map for activists. It’s creating an atmosphere of fear and anxiety on farms around Australia. I’m not sure if it contributed to this incident but it certainly will create more like it.
“I raised the issue of trespass with my state colleagues at the Agriculture Minister’s meeting in Adelaide last week, and I again implore them to send a clear signal that trespass will result in charges and real penalties.
“The example in Caloundra Magistrates Court in Queensland last week where a serial farm invader got only a $200 fine for her third offence trespassing on farms and had no conviction recorded sends a terrible message in my opinion.
“People have a right to live their lives without harassment. The activist section of the vegan community should make their case in the public debate and in the Parliament, not by intruding on farmers’ privacy, property and lives.”