The introduction of regulations to support compliance with New Zealand’s animal welfare legislation will add further weight to New Zealand’s animal welfare standards, according to Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ Ltd).
“World Animal Protection has given New Zealand an ‘A’ ranking on its Animal Protection Index, one of only four countries to achieve that standard,” says Dave Harrison, B+LNZ’s general manager policy and advocacy.
“This reflects the fact we have some of the highest animal welfare standards in the world, and it is important that these high standards are maintained,”
B+LNZ worked alongside Federated Farmers and the Ministry for Primary Industries to develop the new regulations to ensure that the high expectations our industry has around care of animals is upheld in a sensible and practicable way.
“There is still some work to do to achieve the outcomes we want to see. Requiring pain relief for de-horning and disbudding, for example, is a good step forward. But we also need to ensure farmers have easier and more cost-effective access to analgesics,” says Harrison.
“Farmers want to do the right thing and feel a duty of responsibility to ensure the care of their animals. As an industry, it is important to support this by setting an expectation and holding people to account for meeting it.
“But as our expectations evolve we need to make sure farmers have the tools to meet them and the focus of B+LNZ will be on making sure that that is the case,” he says.