MLA wishes to clarify comments made by Live Export Manager, Michael Finucan on ABC TV Lateline, Wednesday 8 May, which have been reported out of context by some media today.
MLA had no prior knowledge of the brutal treatment of animals illustrated in recent media coverage, prior to being shown the footage. We were aware that there have been poor animal handling practices in Indonesia, which is why we have been delivering animal welfare programs in this market, but not the brutal treatment recently revealed.
The below question and answer related to poor animal handling practices and was part of a discussion around industry’s animal welfare program in Indonesia to improve livestock handling.
Tony Jones, Lateline: Did you and your colleagues, as Bob Katter has just said in the piece we’ve just seen, did you and your colleagues know about this for years and just not manage to solve the problem?
Michael Finucan: We’ve been working up here for many years and we’ve always known that there’s issues, and that’s why we commit resources and time and energy and effort in being in Jakarta, being in the - in Indonesia and delivering these programs. We’re working in another country, there’s challenges there. We’ve always known there’s more to do, and we’ve always been upfront that that’s what we are doing.
As we’ve always said, if any evidence of such brutality had been witnessed, MLA would have acted swiftly to bring it to a halt. Industry will continue to work to bring facilities to international standards and improve and assure animal welfare.