Animal health and welfare

Australian processors look after the animals in their care.

The reality is their livelihoods depend on processing healthy and content livestock.

Ensuring good animal health and welfare prior to slaughter means processors do everything from:

…ensuring livestock are assessed by a vet before processing to ensure they are healthy and disease free
…to moving livestock calmly in yards using low-stress stock handling techniques
…to slaughtering livestock in a way that they do not suffer unreasonable or unnecessary pain or distress.


Let’s get real

The slaughter of animals can be confronting for most people but is a necessary step in the meat production process. Minimising pain and suffering of livestock is top of mind for processors and regulators.

From time to time, we’ve all heard a story or seen some footage where livestock aren’t treated as well as the majority of animals in the industry.

Animal cruelty cases are just as distressing to the industry as they are to the community.  

So, what’s the industry doing about it?

The Australian red meat industry has been proactive in creating new programs and systems to ensure and to demonstrate the industry’s commitment to best practice animal health and welfare. 

In a number of cases, our industry has led the world.

Here is an example of recent research our industry has completed to improve the welfare of livestock…

The red meat and livestock industry has achieved a lot over the years, but there’s more to do. 

How processors know what to do

The actions processors take are informed by:

Putting into practice findings from proactive research and development funded by the red meat industry to enhance animal health and welfare at processing plants.

Following the Industry Animal Welfare Standards for Livestock Processing Establishments Preparing Meat for Human Consumption, which integrate relevant state and commonwealth legislation and other commercial requirements.

Following the Australian Livestock Processing Industry Animal Welfare Certification System to demonstrate compliance with industry best practice animal welfare standards.

Following animal welfare and prevention of cruelty to animals legislation of state and territory governments.