Animal welfare is at the heart of what we do at AUSTREX NZ, and we take our responsibility to lead the world in best-practice animal welfare extremely seriously.

For over 48 years, we have maintained an industry leading record of exporting and delivering livestock safely, with strong animal welfare and long-term customer satisfaction our primary objectives. With an experienced veterinarian as our group Chairman (Dr Richard Trivett), the highest animal welfare standards are championed from the very top and throughout the business. Our high standards and excellent compliance record are central to our company culture and reputation.

Our sustainability strategy is based on the modern ‘Five Domains’ animal welfare approach – a commitment to do no harm and proactively pursue a positive welfare state.

The five domains are

Appropriate consumption of water and nutritious foods to maintain health and minimise thirst and hunger

Where applicable, provide shade or shelter, good housing, good air quality and comfortable rest

Prevent, or rapidly diagnose and treat disease and injury so animals enjoy good health

Provide sufficient space, proper facilities and appropriate company of the animals’ own kind

Promote conditions that make animals feel safe and secure, and avoid mental suffering

The Five Domains of animal welfare and their association with the Principles and Criteria[ii] and how these apply to best practice New Zealand livestock export

Five Domains Welfare Principles Welfare criteria Application by Best Practice New Zealand cattle sea exporters[1]
Nutrition Good feeding Absence of prolonged hunger

Absence of prolonged thirst

  • Nutritional tested pellets and hay of specific quality and formulation is supplied in excess of 2.7% bodyweight across 3-4 daily feeds
  • Fresh water is provided ad lib in automated water systems
Environment Good housing Comfort around resting

Thermal comfort

Ease of movement

  • Current stocking densities in 20-30m2 pens allow all cattle to stand up and walk-around. All cattle can feed or lie-down to rest at the same time
  • Pen air turnovers (PAT) >250m/hr on custom built vessels and regular pen washing (every 2-5 days) removes heat and ammonia from the pen microclimate, controlling air quality and heat stress risk
  • Bedding is provided in excess of 7MT per 1000m2
Health Good health Absence of injuries

Absence of disease

Absence of pain induced my management procedures

  • Stringent cattle procurement policies are the key metric to disease prevention by ensuring cattle quality and consistency at loading (200-500kg, BCS >2.7, thrifty, sound)
  • Veterinarians are intrinsically involved in disease prevention, management and treatment
Behaviour &

Mental state

Appropriate behaviour Expression of social behaviours

Expression of other behaviours

Good human-animal relationship

Positive Emotional state

  • Cattle are penned in groups of their peers in established social groups and strict draft lines (weight, frame score, type) where they complete normal ruminating and grooming behaviours
  • Low-stress stock handling completed during all interaction

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