Former senator to review livestock standards

Australian Livestock Exporters Council (ALEC) is welcoming veterinarian Chris Back’s appointment as the independent chair of the Technical Advisory Committee which will review the Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (ASEL).
ASEL is mandated by the Federal Government and regulates the handling of animals in Australia’s livestock export supply chains, from preparation to discharge in the importing country.
Back, a former Western Australian Liberal Senator, graduated in Veterinary Science at the University of Queensland in 1971.
He retains his Veterinary Surgeons Board of WA registration, and has worked as a livestock veterinarian and university lecturer.
Australian Livestock Exporters’ Council CEO Simon Westaway said the appointment of Back and the other Technical Advisory Committee members was a positive step which will improve the review process.
“This review is strongly supported by ALEC because it will ensure ASEL reflects new technology and research and that existing high industry standards continue to be aligned with community expectations,” he said.
“ALEC wants ASEL to remain a benchmark which promotes a sustainable and growing live trade for Australia.”
The committee will provide recommendations to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, also includes veterinarians Teresa Collins and Hugh Millar, regulation specialist Russell Phillips and livestock export industry expert Kevin Shiell.
AVA President Paula Parker said the association has been calling for the presence of vets on the committee.
“We’re really pleased with this decision,” she said.
“Veterinarians have expert knowledge in both animal health and welfare aspects of the live export process.
“These are essential skills to ensure we maintain the highest standards in Australia’s livestock export supply chain.”
The AVA is part of the ASEL Reference Group, which provides consultative information and advice to the committee prior to it putting recommendations to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
“We look forward to providing further input to ensure the standards governing live export are science-based and represent best practice,” Parker said.
The reference group also includes the RSPCA, ALEC and livestock producers.

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