April 2, 2024


Indonesia halts live cattle imports from Australian property after sea shipment deaths



Indonesia has imposed a temporary ban on live cattle imports from a specific Australian property following the recent deaths of over 100 cattle on the Brahman Express vessel, which set sail from Darwin, Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported.


The Australian livestock industry is apprehensive about potential disruptions in trade, given its heavy reliance on Indonesia, a key importer of live cattle worth hundreds of millions of dollars annually.


While the exact number of cattle casualties remains undisclosed by the Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry, the exporter reported a notably high mortality rate during the voyage.


Indonesian Director of Animal Husbandry Nuryani Zainuddin confirmed that the Indonesian government is collaborating with Australia to investigate the incident, resulting in the temporary suspension of one registered premises from supplying cattle.


The Brahman Express, with a capacity exceeding 4,000 cattle, departed from the Northern Territory, although the precise number of loaded cattle remains unclear. Investigations have traced the deceased cattle back to a single property in the Northern Territory.


According to the RSPCA, which opposes live exports, reports indicate that hundreds of cattle perished during the voyage.


Australia's chief veterinarian Beth Cookson stated that preliminary investigations have ruled out diseases like foot and mouth or lumpy skin disease among the deceased cattle.


Dr Cookson explained that while the investigation is ongoing, the Northern Territory government has provisionally diagnosed botulism as the cause of deaths on the property. Botulism, she clarified, is not contagious but can be fatal, with an incubation period of up to 17 days. Despite being endemic in the Northern Territory, botulism is preventable through vaccination.


-      Australian Broadcasting Corporation

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