The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) has concluded its regulatory investigation into the Meramist abattoir in Queensland following media reporting of animal welfare concerns.
In October last year the department commenced a regulatory investigation with a focus of ensuring Meramist and its operations were competent in animal welfare management.
DAWE identified non-compliance with the Australian Meat Standard —a standard which all abattoirs producing red meat for human consumption must adhere to.
The standard ensures that meat and meat products for human consumption comply with food safety and animal welfare requirements.
DAWE takes animal welfare breaches seriously, and has directed Meramist to amend its approved arrangement to better ensure its operations adhere explicitly to the Industry Animal Welfare Standards for Livestock Processing Establishments.
The department will continue to monitor Meramist through its ongoing oversight of its export operations.
Should there be further identified non-compliances, the department may seek to undertake further regulatory action.
Under the Constitution the Government’s role in regulating animal welfare is largely limited to exports. State and territory governments have the responsibility to regulate, enforce or otherwise ensure animal welfare within their jurisdiction.
For more information on the Industry Animal Welfare Standards for Livestock Processing Establishments.