Sentient, The Veterinary Institute for Animal Ethics, supports the recent announcement by NSW Primary Industries Minister, Katrina Hodgkinson, in calling for a state-wide review of the operations in all abattoirs as a result of recent evidence of animal abuse to come out of the Hawkesbury Valley Meat Processors abattoir. This included bludgeoning, overuse of electric prodders, and inappropriate and insufficient stunning practices, breaching both the Food Regulations 2010 and Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1979. Sentient calls for a similar review to be performed at a national level on all non-halal and halal abattoirs.
Furthermore, Sentient strongly recommends the instalment of mandatory CCTV surveillance in all Australian abattoirs. The findings of animal abuse at Hawkesbury Valley Meat Processors echo all too readily the Indonesian footage shown by ABC’s Four Corners program in 2011. This recent incident highlights yet again, the inadequacy of current measures to ensure acceptable animal welfare standards, and we share our disappointment with the NSW government and RSPCA NSW that routine auditing failed to identify such abuse. We submit that this situation will be perpetuated until the establishment of permanent monitoring systems combined with tougher penalties.
Sentient, The Veterinary Institute for Animal Ethics