NFF Warns Parliament Over Historic Export Ban Consideration

Australia's peak farm body is urging parliamentarians to inform themselves and contemplate the serious precedent being set by the Government's legislation to ban live sheep exports, tabled today.

NFF President David Jochinke warns that unless MPs and senators do their homework, they are likely to fall victim to a highly effective misinformation campaign by animal activists.

"Activists want you to think this industry hasn't changed. They want you to think that the ghastly scenes seared in our memories from many years back are still true today. That is completely false.

"The fact is we haven't had a serious welfare incident on water since sweeping reforms more than seven years ago.

"Banning live sheep exports means banning something that does a huge amount of good. Australia's trade sets the global standard for animal welfare; gets safe, affordable protein to those in need; and supports thousands of jobs in Western Australia."

Mr Jochinke cautioned that by endorsing this ban, parliament would be supporting groups whose stated objective was to end animal agriculture.

"If you look at the industry today, its animal welfare outcomes are gold standard. You ban that, and you put wind in the sails of groups who are openly campaigning for an end to livestock farming.

"Unless you and the people you represent agree with an end to livestock production in Australia, listen to the farmers - not the fanatics.

"We're talking about the first permanent export ban by Parliament on a mainstream commodity. This couldn't be more serious.

The introduction of legislation coincides with an escalating industry fightback, with the launch of a grassroots campaign today and a major demonstration planned in WA tomorrow.

"I think the Government has underestimated how hard the industry will fight for this.

"This isn't just about live export. This is about regulation based on science and evidence rather than activist misinformation. It's a principal and a precedent industry will stand on."

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