top of page
Overwhelming crowds gather again to rally against the Albanese Government’s ban on live sheep exports

14 June 2024

Farmers came together again in their thousands today in Western Australia (WA) as they continued their fight against the Albanese Government’s ban on the live export of sheep by sea. 


Sheep Producers Australia Board Director and local farmer Bindi Murray said the Inquiry into Export Control Amendment (Ending Live Sheep Exports by Sea) Bill 2024 sought to phase out an important supply chain which provided jobs and supported families, small businesses, and country towns. 


“We’re here today at the Muresk parliamentary hearing into the Government’s live sheep export ban – which is the second public hearing into the matter – to make sure every part of the supply chain is given a voice,” Ms Murray said. 


“And look at the turn out, it’s just exceptional, overwhelming even.”


Ms Murray, who spoke at the public hearing, said if the Government chose to pass the Bill it would have to bear the cost of its choice. 


“I believe the question to be answered is can the Government move our local producers to another supply chain while ensuring we will all have the same farmgate opportunities and the buying competition we have now,” Ms Murray said. 


“And with just four years to finalise a transition away from live export by sea, I have great doubt in their capacity to do this … and near enough is not going to be good enough.”


Representing the local farming industry, Ms Murray said at the hearing her rough calculations over a five-year transition away from live export was that her industry would need about $100m of support for processors, $100m for supply chain businesses to plan and improve infrastructure, $20m for market development, $15m for airfreight in WA and some $20m for community support and development, mental health and exit payments. 


“That’s $255m already and I’ve left it to the government to estimate and fund their costs of implementation,” she said.  “I can show you the envelope I worked out the costings on to get to this number - but I have yet to see the envelope used by the Government for their calculations.”


Sheep Producers Australia CEO Bonnie Skinner echoed Ms Murray’s cries against the Government’s ban and the short timeline mapped out for the industry to leave live export behind them. 


“Consultation on policy implementation has been done in a rushed and unprofessional manner that has left many producers feeling removed from a process that will impact their families, businesses and communities,” Ms Skinner said. 


“Less than four years is not enough time for sheep producers to adjust their production systems, nor is it sufficient time for processor capacity development, growth of airfreight or sea freight capability, and the expansion of new offshore markets for sheepmeat,” she continued.


“If this Bill – which is not supported by any agricultural body - proceeds, the timeframe and transition package at the very least needs to be revisited – and that’s all there is to it.”

Sheep Producers Australia submission into the Inquiry into Export Control Amendment (Ending Live Sheep Exports by Sea) Bill 2024 is here.


Available for live interviews: 


Bindi Murray

WA sheep farmer and Sheep Producers Australia Board Director

Bonnie Skinner

CEO Sheep Producers Australia


Media Contact

Annie Frisch 0455 999 130

bottom of page