Live Export Facts

Importance of Live Exports

The live export industry is an integral part of Australia’s livestock industry and an increasingly important contributor to Australia’s economy, contributing an average of $1 billion in export earnings annually. Australia is the world’s largest overall exporter of livestock, and the industry underpins the employment of approximately 13,000 people throughout Australia.

In addition to the considerable economic benefits the live export industry provides Australia’s economy, the trade is also important to a number of overseas countries who rely heavily on imports of Australian livestock to meet their protein needs and ensure their overall food security. Australia is often the primary, and in some cases the only, supplier of livestock to a number of overseas markets.

Source: LiveCorp

Industry regulation

Australia is recognised as a world leader in animal welfare practices, with the highest standards of animal welfare for livestock exports. As one of Australia’s leading live exporters, LSS is committed to ensuring best practice in its operations and is focused on the welfare of all livestock that it exports. LSS is committed to supporting the principles of ASEL and ESCAS as a framework within which it can work closely with both the Department of Agriculture and the broader industry to make improvements to the way livestock are transported and handled around the world.

The Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (ASEL)

ASEL, which came into effect in December 2004, adopts a whole-of-chain approach to animal welfare, setting out regulatory standards across the export process from the sourcing and preparation of livestock on farm through to their unloading at the destination port. ASEL provides the regulatory framework for:

  • Sourcing and on-farm preparation of livestock
  • Land transport of livestock
  • Management of livestock in registered premises
  • Vessel preparation and loading
  • Onboard management of livestock
  • Air transport of livestock

The Exporter Supply Chain Assurance Scheme (ESCAS)

Under the ESCAS regulatory framework introduced in 2011/2012, exporters seeking a permit to export feeder/and or slaughter livestock must demonstrate their supply chain complies with the assurance system’s four main principles, ensuring that:

  • animal handling and slaughter in the importing country conforms to World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) animal welfare recommendations
  • the exporter has control of all supply chain arrangements for livestock transport, management and slaughter and all livestock remain within in the supply chain
  • the exporter can trace all livestock through the supply chain
  • the supply chain in the importing country is independently audited


For more information on industry regulation, visit the Department of Agriculture or LiveCorp websites.