top of page
Current situation in the Western Australian sheep industry

22 Apr 2024

The Western Australian (WA) sheep industry is currently facing an incredibly difficult situation brought on by ongoing dry conditions, financial constraints, and a severely depressed sheep market. Sheep Producers Australia has over the past 12 months been working to communicate the risks of the combination of these factors for sheep producers and the industry.

While producers are working through their own seasonal strategies to manage the prolonged dry season the current market conditions are making it difficult to move certain classes of stock off farm.


It is anticipated that this situation will worsen with the upcoming live sheep export moratorium and dry short term rain outlook. Live export provides a relief valve to farmers in WA suffering dry conditions and an increase in competition in the sheep market. Sheep Producers Australia is continuing to call for the recognition of the unique and important role live export plays in the WA Sheep and lamb market and its continuation as a market open to WA producers.

Sheep Producers Australia is actively advocating for options that could relieve pressure on producers at this time including reviewing the live export moratorium cut off time for vessels and adding additional air freight access for sheepmeat exports out of Perth.

Producers are facing difficulties implementing their late break and de-stocking strategies, and where necessary, euthanasia is used to uphold animal welfare in the short and long term.


Sheep Producers Australia will continue to engage with the WA Department of Primary Industry and Regional Development and our WA stakeholders to ensure that support is reaching where it is needed.


The WA Government has initiated the Dry Season Ministerial Taskforce of which Sheep Producers Australia is a member to coordinate the response across industry and government, ensure resources and support are available to producers. All on the ground resources must be activated to ensure we are managing the welfare of our animals and our producers.


Sheep Producers Australia will continue to closely monitor the situation and advocate for ongoing and immediate support for the industry.


Attribute to Bonnie Skinner CEO Sheep Producers Australia.



Annie Frisch

General Manager Public Relations

m 0455 999 130

bottom of page