A CONSULATION period on the Heat Stress Risk Assessment draft report has been extended by one month to 1 March.

Agriculture minister David Littleproud said it was important all stakeholders had a chance to give feedback.

“The industry asked us to move to a model based on animal welfare rather than just comparing how many sheep die on each voyage, so we’re doing that calmly and decisively,” Mr Littleproud said.

“The Heat Stress Risk Assessment review was done by a panel of experts in animal welfare, including heat stress physiology, with expert input from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority on ship ventilation.

“The recommendations in the draft report are significant and its sensible to give stakeholders more time to provide well thought out and researched submissions.”

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Mr Littleproud said submissions would be considered by the panel as it finalised its report and recommendations to the Department of Agriculture, which acts as the independent regulator of live exports.

“Interim arrangements for the coming northern summer can be considered once the submission period has ended,” he said.

Stakeholders can provide their feedback to the draft report via the ‘Have Your Say’ platform at http://haveyoursay.agriculture.gov.au/hsra-review

Live exports always have been controversial and returned to prominence in the first half of 2018 with shocking images of sheep suffering heat stress on board the ship Awassi Express.

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