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Unspeakable cruelty: Australia and New Zealand cattle exported to Sri Lanka dying and malnourished

10 percent of the 5,000 cattle imported so far died and many were diseased. The scheme was devised to improve the supply of fresh milk in Sri Lanka and reduce the country's reliance on expensive powdered milk.

LORNA KNOWLES: ‘Hundreds of Australian and New Zealand cattle have died in a Federal Government-backed export deal with Sri Lanka… The scheme was devised to improve the supply of fresh milk in Sri Lanka and reduce the country’s reliance on expensive, imported powdered milk. Angry Sri Lankan farmers have told the ABC the “high-yielding, pregnant dairy cows” they were promised were overpriced, unhealthy and infertile.

They said 10 per cent of the 5,000 cattle imported so far had died and many were diseased… The ABC has been contacted by multiple farmers, as well as the Ceylon Cattle Farmers Federation, to raise concerns about the scheme. Amal Suriyage, who bought 200 cows last year, said the animals were in poor condition when they arrived in December.

“My staff said it looks like they have not come from Australia. Looks like they come from Ethiopia,” Mr Suriyage said… He said he would be forced to cull the remaining 40 cows because some had the highly contagious disease Mycoplasma bovis. “What I have now are carcasses of those dead cows and calves. I think I have a cemetery, not a farm anymore,” he said…

Animals Australia spokesman Tim Vasudeva said the scheme must be stopped. “It’s been, from what we can see, a fairly unmitigated disaster from a human and animal welfare perspective,” Mr Vasudeva said. Mr Vasudeva said the situation highlighted the need for changes to welfare standards for live export cattle. “We do have formal frameworks for the export of cattle for slaughter, but not for dairy and breeder cattle,” he said. “So basically that means those welfare protections just aren’t there”.’  SOURCE…

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