Dairy News

Vegans target dairy

By Geoff Adams

Vegan activists targeted a Queensland dairy farmer in a recent national campaign against livestock farmers.

Vegan protesters  launched a cross-border campaign targeting a busy Melbourne street, plus abattoirs and farms in Victoria, NSW and Queensland.

It resulted in scores of arrests, criminal charges and a renewed call for farmers to take action, with the federal government committing to underwrite legal claims.

Queensland Dairyfarmers Organisation Vice President Matt Trace said the actions followed threats of a widespread protest.

“The demonstrators’ signs said that these were peaceful protests,’’ Mr Trace said.

“That they may not have resorted to active violence is neither here nor there. Their very presence in such numbers was enough to cause concern.

“These groups swarm over properties, ignore requests of being asked to leave, terrify the livestock in the yards and harass farmers, their family and staff.,’’ Mr Trace said.

“The calmness and restraint shown by those who were attacked should be praised.’’

“The demonstrations were designed to gain public sympathy for the vegan movement and to supposedly show inhumane practices of intensive farming. From the footage shown yesterday, the demonstrations did anything but what they were intended.’’

Activists entered the property of a Darling Downs dairy farmer, who appealed to the protesters to leave his calves alone.

A popular cafe in West Gippsland announced on Sunday it has closed, blaming "threats from abusive vegan activists".

 Federal Attorney-General Christian Porter wrote to Privacy Commissioner Angelene Falk to consider investigating Under the Privacy Act the group allegedly behind the activism.

"There are strong grounds to conclude that Aussie Farms Inc is engaging in a systematic effort in collecting, using and disclosing personal information to the detriment of farmers and agricultural producers," the letter states.

Mr Porter also wrote to the state and territory attorneys-general and police ministers to urge them to tighten up their criminal trespass laws.

Privacy laws were changed last Friday which exposed Aussie Farms' website to significant penalties for publishing farmers' addresses and contact details.