Animal welfare

Animal Welfare

Animal Welfare

Victorians expect high standards of animal welfare for all animals, whether those animals are pets or farm animals.

Victoria’s farmers understand this and share these values. 

Whether you buy vegetables or meat, farmers are up for the challenge of producing the food consumers want in safe, humane and sustainable ways.

Farmers work to ensure their animals are well cared-for and treated humanely.

Farmers develop a deep understanding of the animals in their care through years of experience, observation and husbandry.  The latest veterinary and animal behaviour science is applied to ensure animals are treated humanely on Victoria’s farms.

The raising, transport and slaughter of animals in Victoria is guided by a number of industry codes and best practice guides.  In addition, the Victorian State Government has regulations and enforcement in place to prevent the mistreatment of animals.

Farmers apply generations of understanding of animal husbandry and animal behaviour science by taking practical steps to provide animals with:

  1. Good nutrition: ready access to fresh water and good diet to maintain full health and vigour.
  2. Good environment:  shade/shelter or suitable housing, good air quality and comfortable resting areas.
  3. Good health: prevent, or rapidly diagnose and treat, disease and injury, and foster good muscle tone and posture.
  4. Appropriate natural behaviour: sufficient space, proper facilities, congenial company and appropriately varied conditions.
  5. Positive mental experiences: provide safe, congenial and species-appropriate opportunities for positive experiences.

Industry Codes and Resources

Each animal industry has different plans and rules to support their species and production systems.  We have curated links to online resources for more information.

All species:

Dairy cattle:

Beef cattle:



Sheep and Wool:

Slaughter and Processing

The slaughter and processing of livestock is a necessary part of putting red meat, chicken, pork and other meat products on the plates of Victoria’s consumers.

Farmers understand consumers’ wishes that slaughter and processing be humane.

The meat processing sector is highly regulated for both animal welfare and human health outcomes.

PrimeSafe is the statutory authority responsible for regulating meat, poultry, seafood and pet food in Victoria.  For more information, click here:

Victorian State Government Regulation The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 (POCTA Act) is currently Victoria’s key animal welfare legislation.

This is your chance to ask real farmers how animal welfare comes to life on the land.