Posted March 14, 2019 04:11:37 Wayne Farms, the cattle producer owned by the Australian billionaire who owns the Melbourne football club and is also the CEO of the New South Wales government, has been accused of being a major importer of beef and pork by the Victorian Government.
The Victorian Government said it had launched an investigation into the importation of animal feed products.
A spokesperson for the Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, said the Premier was aware of the allegations against Wayne Farms and would investigate the matter further.
“The Premier has directed the state’s anti-fraud and fraud watchdog, ASIC, to look into whether there is a case to prosecute,” Mr Andrews said.
He said the investigation would include examining the importations of animal products and whether there was a pattern of importing animals that were in poor condition.
Mr Andrews said the inquiry would look at whether any other cattle companies were similarly involved in importing animal feed.
Earlier this year, it emerged that Wayne Farms was the biggest importer and exporter of piglets in Australia.
The Australian Institute of Agricultural Economics, a national trade body, said that in 2017, Wayne Farms exported 7.8 million tonnes of pork and 4.4 million tonnes to South Australia.
Mr Andrews was unable to disclose the exact figures.
An animal welfare organisation said Wayne Farms should not be in the position it is in, given the alleged problems at its animal farms.
In a statement, the Australian Humane Association said Wayne Farm was “not a suitable supplier” and “should not be involved in the supply chain of cattle”.
“They have also failed to provide adequate monitoring of their supply chain and have failed to report on its management of its animals,” the statement said.