ST. LEONARDS, New South Wales – The Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC) is calling for the immediate shut down a website that includes a map detailing the locations of meat and poultry abattoirs and packing facilities.
The site is operated by Aussie Farms, an animal rights charity that seeks to end what the organization calls “commercialized animal abuse and exploitation.” In addition to the map, the site also serves as a repository for photographs, videos, documents and other materials the group says provides visual evidence of animal cruelty and exploitation. The site also offers public relations tools such as campaign fliers and posters relating to the animal rights movement in Australia.
“Any group or individual who obtains evidence will have a nationwide distribution platform that will allow them to achieve the greatest reach for their findings, in the most effective and efficient manner possible,” the website states.
But Patrick Hutchinson, CEO of AMIC, called the site “irresponsible and a breach of privacy on all levels.” He said the Aussie Farms website is a danger to producers, animals and activists because it encourages trespassing.
“Our organization and our members are held to the very highest standards of animal welfare, in all aspects of our operation,” Hutchinson said in a statement. “The impact of encouraging activist encroachment onto these sites hurts hundreds and in some cases thousands of employees and their families who are working to ensure a safe and consistent food supply for Australia and the rest of the world.”
Hutchinson added that abattoirs and meat processing facilities must follow strict standards of biosecurity in addition to work, health and safety regulations. Violations of those standards can negatively impact those businesses and the activists.