Is it time Australia banned live export?
In the U.S., slaughterhouse workers prefer to stun bovine before hanging them up and skewering them. In Vietnam, it is a common practice to kill cows by means of a sledgehammer.
As gruesome as it sounds, the footage (below) is even worse. The animal rights organization Animals Australia is responsible for leaking the video which goes behind the scenes in a Vietnamese abattoir and shows the horrifying ways cows imported from Australia are being killed.
As can be viewed, the man working in the Vietnamese slaughterhouse clubs the head of a cow at least five times before it falls to the ground. Then, he continues to wail on the cow four more times before it finally dies. Humane is not a term that could come even close to describing this event.
Animals Australia is committed to uncovering the extensive live export regulation breaches throughout Vietnam. So far, the evidence exposes systematic corruption and circumvention of the traceability system in Vietnam. As a result, tens of thousands of animals have been exposed to horrific cruelty.
In 2015, Australia exported as many as 227,563 cows to Vietnam, according to the Australian Livestock Exporters’ Council (ALEC). And, it is said the export has continued into the first four months of 2016.
Additional findings were unearthed by the investigation which began in 2015:
- Australian animals in non-approved abattoirs in a notorious slaughter village where sledgehammering is a nightly occurrence
- Australian animals present at non-approved slaughterhouses in North-East and Central Vietnam
- the routine removal of ear tags so they cannot be linked back to the exporter legally responsible for them
- an Australian bull butchered while still alive at an approved abattoir
- Australian supplied stunning equipment being incorrectly used in approved slaughterhouses
- animals being crudely killed and butchered in both approved and non-approved slaughterhouses in filthy, unhygienic conditions
According to its website, the organization began conducting undercover investigations in Vietnam last year. When it first contacted ALEC, plenty of substantive evidence had been collected pointing to the cruel treatment of Australia’s live-exported animals. Unfortunately, ALEC failed to respond to it.
According to Lyn White, a campaign director with the group Animals Australia,
“Regulations are failing, exporters know it, and yet they continue to flood Vietnam with animals. The evidence gathered exposes systemic corruption and circumvention of the traceability system in Vietnam, leaving tens of thousands of animals exposed to horrific cruelty.”
This latest footage is a result of Animals Australia hiring other undercover investigators to secretly film the practices taking place in the Vietnamese abattoirs.
13 slaughterhouses in North and Central Vietnam were visited. Only two of the facilities met Australian requirements, however. Investigators also discovered Australian cows in approximately 11 non-accredited slaughterhouses in the country. Distinctive ear notches confirm that the cows in the video were, in fact, imported from Australia.
Understandably, the video has sparked international outrage and has even prompted a comment from the Australian government. According to Anon, the issue is officially being investigated.
Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Barnaby Joyce, told the press that the abattoirs involved in the heinous practice have been suspended from receiving cows from Australia. However, an outright ban of cows to the country wasn’t even considered. This is likely because Australia’s live cattle export industry is estimated to be worth around $595 million a year, according to BBC.
“Immediately when we found out about this we went straight into action. The Department [of Agriculture] has been working closely with the industry, the abattoir has been suspended from receiving cattle, we are investigating this process but further action needs to take place and will take place,” Mr Barnaby said.
The government says it has instructed ALEC to review its systems that oversee control and traceability of Australian cows. However, is enough being done?
The conundrum is confusing as well as highly controversial. What are your thoughts? Please comment below and share this news!
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