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All News Updates & Public Comment => Live Export News Updates => : Export News Tasmania January 17, 2012, 03:05:10 PM

: Indonesian abattoirs fail to lift standards SINCE the government lifted the ban
: Export News Tasmania January 17, 2012, 03:05:10 PM
THE first independent audits of Indonesian abattoirs wanting to import and process Australian cattle have found local workers initially failed to meet animal welfare standards, killing cows incorrectly and using blades that were not sharp enough.

More than 100 audit reports required under the Gillard government's tough new industry regulations have been published online for major companies upgrading abattoir facilities so they can import and process Australian cattle.

One inspection conducted on an abattoir that Elders-owned North Australian Cattle Company wanted to use found "animal welfare standards were not acceptable" in the initial audit to determine whether it could comply with the regulations.

"The cattle throats were not cut using a single uninterrupted stroke of a knife, and the knives were not always sharpened between animals," the auditor found.

"In addition to it, the lack of corneal reflex to confirm death was not always assured after slaughter."

But the report one of 46 done by Indonesian audit firm SAI Global for the company concluded that "corrective action" was taken and therefore the company did not officially breach standards and could import cattle.

"The corrective action taken was effective and . . . therefore the non-conformance has been concluded as closed out," it said.

"The conclusion is, findings were acceptable for traceability, supply chain control and animal welfare aspects."

Later reports found the company had complied with the regulations, which required exporters to trace Australian animals from feedlot to abattoir and ensure they were treated humanely.

A spokesman for Elders said the audit was undertaken to get the abattoir up to the new standards and all issues were addressed prior to Australian cattle being exported and processed at the abattoir.

"They were not the cattle that had left Australia after the ban," he said.

Federal Agriculture Minister Joe Ludwig introduced the tough regulations which require companies to hire private auditors to ensure compliance following the outcry over an ABC TV Four Corners expose in May on the mistreatment of Australian cattle that led to a month-long ban on the trade.

Animals Australia executive director Glenys Oogjes said the initial audit report findings did not surprise her and it showed animals should be stunned prior to slaughter.

"That these abuses even continued in the presence of auditors is quite shocking, and is yet further evidence that every single animal must be stunned unconscious prior to the throat cut," she said.

"These reports show that these abuses were still occurring in abattoirs that slaughter Australian animals in October of 2011, months after the Four Corners report."

Ms Oogjes also raised concerns about the audit reports published online, saying so much of the documents was blacked-out, including the names of abattoirs, that they were hard to understand.

by: Milanda Rout
    From: The Australian
    January 04, 2012 12:00AM (
: Re: Indonesian abattoirs fail to lift standards SINCE the government lifted the ban
: Export News Tasmania January 17, 2012, 03:06:44 PM
Since the auditors are employed by the exporters, we wonder about how bad the standards REALLY are. And if they 'were not the cattle' send after the ban, what cattle were they?