Agriculture | May 09, 2017
Victorian Pet Food Processors
Victorian Parliament - 9 May 2017 - Ms KEALY - I wish to raise a matter for the attention of the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change. The action I seek is that the minister immediately provide all required information, including a kangaroo management plan, to the federal government so that approval for wildlife trade operations (WTO) can be granted for Victorian pet food processors.
Following extensive lobbying by my Nationals colleagues and me, in September 2016 the government finally announced an extension and expansion of the kangaroo pet food trial. To minimise waste from harvesting kangaroos for pet food it is essential that pet food processors can export the skins to international markets. This requires federal approval as a wildlife trade operation.
Nine months ago David Preece of Victorian Petfood Processors in Hamilton and Seymour applied for WTO approval for the expanded kangaroo pet food trial regions of Glenelg, West Wimmera, Loddon and Bendigo. However, the federal government cannot approve the application for a WTO until further information is received from the Victorian government.
So here we are, nine months on, and after numerous meetings with Victorian government department representatives, the Victorian Labor government has done absolutely nothing to supply the required information to the federal government so that this WTO approval can be granted. Perhaps it is seeking to sabotage the kangaroo pet food trial to appease inner‑city Greens voters.
The delay by Labor in supplying the required information has led to the suspension of an expansion of the Hamilton pet food abattoir, costing local jobs. Victorian pet food processors now have a stockpile of kangaroo skins from the new harvest regions, which has significantly impacted on company cash flow and is putting 30 jobs at risk, all because the Victorian Labor government is sitting on its hands and doing absolutely nothing to provide the required information to the federal government so that the WTO can be approved.
I therefore ask that the minister finally do something to undertake the required kangaroo surveys, release the data and submit the Victorian kangaroo management plan to the federal government so that the Victorian pet food processors’ wildlife trade operations for the export of kangaroo skins can be assessed and approved.