Australians Expect Humane Treatment of Livestock
A Productivity Commission report has identified animal welfare as a “pivotal issue” for the future of Australian agriculture.
The Productivity Commission Inquiry into the Regulation of Australian Agriculture, which was held for over a year, found that Australians place a value on the welfare of farm animals and expect that they are being treated humanely.
The Commission identified a number of problems with the current framework for regulating animal welfare in agriculture including the reactive and emotion-driven approach to policy development, and the lack of science underpinning the process.
The Commission considered options for addressing the issues and recommended that the Australian Government establish an independent statutory organisation dedicated to animal welfare – an Australian Commission for Animal Welfare. The Commission noted that the benefits of an independent body would include greater national consistency in animal welfare standards which would reduce cost for business, increase consumer and community confidence in the livestock industries and establish a more collaborative and less antagonistic approach to standard setting between stakeholders.
RSPCA WA supports the concept of an independent body to develop and oversee national farm animal welfare standards. This would bring long term benefits for the livestock industries themselves in providing the Australian community with greater confidence in the welfare of animals involved.
You can read the Productivity Commission Inquiry Report on the Regulation of Australian Agriculture here.