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New Zealand introduces new rules for live animal exports

26 October 2020

New Zealand announces new requirements for the safe transport of livestock after a cattle ship capsized in the East China sea this summer, killing thousands of cows and most of the ship’s crew.

Reuters reports that only two of the 43 members and more than 6,000 cattle on the Gulf Carrier 1, which was heading from New Zealand to China, survived. The disaster prompted authorities to suspend live cattle exports and launch a review.

The suspension expires on 23 October, but a conditional ban is in place until 30 November, during which time New Zealand's Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) can livestock exports by sea subject to the new conditions.

The conditions include additional inspection of livestock ships, lowering stock density on vessels to 90 percent of current limits to match new Australian standards, increased requirements for voyage reporting and ensuring at least 20 percent of feed is available for unplanned delays.

MPI said it moved fast to ensure there's no serious animal welfare issue for the 24,000 cows in pre-export quarantine, which would likely have to be slaughtered without the interim measures.

“We want to ensure they are moved safely. It’s important to note New Zealand does not export animals for slaughter, but as breeding stock,” said MPI Director General Ray Smith.

New Zealand has been looking into a wider policy review of live animal exports since 2019. MPI said it will advise the new government in the coming weeks after the ruling Labour party was returned to power last week.

($1 = 1.4979 New Zealand dollars)

Read more about this story here.

Source: Reuters


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