Care for all animals

Caring for animals

Our vision for animal welfare is that “every dairy animal is well cared for”.

Healthy cows integral to successful farms

Cows are the livelihood of Australia’s dairy farmers. Their health and wellbeing are essential to the success of every dairy farming business. Farmers have a proven commitment to their herd and the animal husbandry practices demonstrate this.

As an industry, the vision for animal welfare is that “every dairy animal is well cared for”. The National Dairy Industry Animal Welfare Strategy underpins this vision and encourages responsible animal husbandry for good animal welfare outcomes.

The industry strategy and recommended practices are consistent with the new Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for Cattle (see http://www.animalwelfarestandards.net.au/cattle/).

The Standards have now been agreed by State and Territory governments, with the exception of NSW, and become legal requirements that will progressively be implemented by each State and Territory, replacing the existing Codes of Practice. They must be met by all dairy farmers, covering the full range of on-farm management practices for cows, and their welfare considerations. The dairy industry has always had a strong commitment to animal welfare, and most dairy farmers are already exceeding the requirements of the Standards.

All Australian dairy farmers participate in farm quality assurance programs - the food safety elements of these programs are audited to ensure compliance with mandatory food safety legislation. Animal welfare outcomes are included in these programs.

To deliver safe, high quality dairy products, dairy farmers must practice sound animal husbandry and keep their animals in peak condition.