PUBLISHED ON: 11 December 2012
Bakar Tnuva is the largest slaughterhouse in Israel, and one of two abattoirs approved to take Australian animals under the government's new live export regulations.
Video footage taken in September-October 2012 shows Australian cattle being punched, kicked and beaten — with the worst cruelty inflicted on 'downer' animals who could no longer move or stand up. Evidence documented shows one lame bull poked with an electrified prodder over 100 times — in his face, eyes, ears, anus and genitals — the entire time bellowing in pain and distress as he made futile attempts to escape his tormentor. Painful electric prodders are used routinely in Bakar Tnuva to abuse animals.
Australian government audit reports indicate that Bakar Tnuva was audited in July 2012 — two months before this investigation — and was found to comply with the new Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System. In fact the only non-compliance picked up in the audit was a rusty gate, which has since been greased.
Bakar Tnuva passed its ESCAS audit despite the abattoir's routine procedures and entrenched behaviour of workers demonstrating multiple breaches of OIE and ESCAS guidelines.
The auditors who 'inspected' and passed this facility were chosen and paid by the exporter. This presents a system that is completely untrustworthy.
Wherever animals are handled and slaughtered en masse there will be cruelty and suffering. But the failure of the Australian Government's system to ensure facilities can meet even the most basic standards is unforgivable. At the very least, the responsibility for ensuring that a facility can meet standards should rest with Australian government veterinarians.
The investigation and the exposé
Frightened animals being bashed, hit, shocked with an electric prod in the eyes and face before suffering a terrifying death — these are the images filmed by Israeli journalist and undercover investigator, Ronen Bar. Watch his interview below...
WARNING: contains graphic images.
UPDATE April 2013
Australian Government investigation fails to take action »
UPDATE October 2013
Israeli Government lays cruelty charges »
Ending live export
For as long as this cruel trade in living beings exists — we remain as committed as ever to sparing animals from falling victim to it. Will you join us?
Please spare 1 minute now to lend your voice to the animals — and help create a world free from the horror of live export.