For the second year in a row supporters of Australia’s livestock export trade will stage a pro-live export rally in Fremantle adjacent to an anti-live export rally being held in the same location.
Support Live Export rally coordinator and WA sheep farmer Michael Trant said the rally will see farmers, truck drivers, stock agents and other industry representatives gather at Merv Cowan Park near Fremantle’s Stirling Bridge on Sunday,
December 8, in a show of support for the trade and its importance to the entire agricultural and rural community.
Last year an estimated 1800 people turned out, forming a line along the Swan River foreshore in counter protest to the second annual Stop Live Export rally which took place across the Stirling Bridge at the same time.
Mr Trant said live export workers and farmers will talk to the crowd about front-line animal welfare improvements being made along the entire supply chain, from export to slaughter.
Mr Trant said people involved in the trade had had a gutful of the industry's positive stories being continually ignored.
“We’re sick of hearing blatant lies from those trying to shut down the trade, like complaints about overcrowded trucks, or ‘pregnant sheep’ on board export boats which actually turn out to be male sheep. These people are trying to tell us what is good for animals,” Mr Trant said.
“Out of the hundred plus countries that export live animals, Australia is the only one doing anything to improve conditions in foreign countries.
“We want people to know that banning something fixes nothing.”
“Since last year’s rally we’ve been forced to sell our farm, because we have lost markets due to the tighter regulations placed on the trade. The protesters don’t seem to realise or care about the effect it’s having on our farmers.”
Mr Trant says he has heard of buses being organised from as far away as Northampton, Morawa, Three Springs and Bunbury.
“Everyone is welcome to come and show your support for the farmers, the truckies, the stock agents, the yardmen, the jackaroos, jillaroos, feed mills, hay and grain growers, lot feeders, vets, AQIS officials, shearers and all the other support industries involved.”
The rally will be held at Merv Cowan Park in Fremantle from 9am on Sunday, December 8.