UPDATE: Australia’s largest export company – Emanuel Exports – has had its license permanently cancelled.
After unthinkable cruelty was exposed on its ships, Perth-based livestock export company Emanuel Exports has had its licence suspended by the Australian government.
Last month, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources sent a show-cause notice to the companyafter footage showed sheep crammed together on filthy, hot vessels, struggling to breathe and covered in their own excrement.
This suspension is great news for animals suffering at the hands of the live-export industry and hopefully will be a step towards shutting down the trade for good.
More than 200 million animals have been crammed onto filthy cargo ships over the last 30 years. Every single one was an individual who felt fear and pain. The industry has proved repeatedly that transporting millions of animals thousands of kilometres across the sea through all weather extremes is ethically untenable.
“We have long said that if the laws were enforced, live export would become impossible. This is evidence of that,” said RSPCA Australia Senior Policy Officer Dr Jed Goodfellow. “Make no mistake, [Emanuel Exports] is not the exception. What we saw in the 60 Minutes footage included routine conditions across multiple voyages. This is what long-haul live sheep export looks like, and it must not continue.”
It’s hard to simply forget what we saw on these ships in April, and it’s encouraging to see that politicians haven’t forgotten about it either. Keeping the spotlight on this heartbreaking issue is critical. If you haven’t already, please write to your local MP to urge him or her to support upcoming legislation to ban live exports and ask your family and friends to do the same.