Land Transport

The Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for the Land Transport of Livestock have been endorsed by the Primary Industries Ministerial Committee for legislation.

Click here for the Land Transport Standards and Guidelines

Progress report

The Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for the Land Transport of Livestock are being regulated into law by State and Territory governments. The implementation dates for the Land Transport Standards by state and territory are:


In South Australia, the Livestock Transport Standards and Guidelines came into effect in August 2012. The Animal Welfare Regulations 2012 were remade on that date and included the Livestock Transport Standards written in a legally enforceable manner.


The Tasmanian Animal Welfare (Land Transport of Livestock) Regulations commenced in June 2013. The standards were adopted as regulations from the Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for the Land Transport of Livestock.


The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Land Transport of Livestock) Standards 2013 No 1 was implemented in June 2013. The Standards are listed in Schedule 1 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Regulation 2012 as relevant Standards under Part 4 of the Regulation. There are minor differences from the national Standards and Guidelines where there was pre-existing legislation – these are dealt with by the insertion of notes in the appropriate clause.


The Land Transport Standards are prescribed (5 March 2013) by reference into enforceable regulations under the Victorian Livestock Management Act 2010.  The Act encourages livestock operators to demonstrate compliance with the Standards through participation in approved industry Quality Assurance programs.


Queensland regulated the Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines – Land Transport of Livestock as a compulsory requirement under the Animal Care and Protection Regulation in January 2014. An inital grace period of 6 months was applied and has now finished. Enforcement of these laws commenced from 1 August 2014.


In the Northern Territory, the Land Transport Standards have been adopted under the Livestock Regulations since January 2013. Compliance and enforcement activity will be undertaken by Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries Veterinary Officers and Livestock Biosecurity Officers.


The Land Transport Standards have not been regulated in Western Australia to date. It is anticipated that while regulations are being drafted, WA will be taking an interim step of prescribing them for the purpose of section 25 and section 84 of the Animal Welfare Act 2002 (WA).


The Land Transport Standards and Guidelines will be implemented in the ACT via a code of practice under the Animal Welfare Act 1992.

The ACT agrees that having nationally consistent legislation and documented minimum standards enforced across Australia is a positive step. Where Commonwealth and Territory legislation exists, the welfare of the stock should be the priority and higher standards should apply.

Endorsement dates:

PISC meeting for endorsement version 1.1 – September 2012

PIMC meeting for endorsement – May 21 2009

PISC meeting for endorsement – March 2009

In September 2008 the land transport reference group endorsed:

  • Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for the Land Transport of Livestock
  • Regulation Impact Statement
  • Public Consultation Response Action Plan
  • Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines Development Business Plan.



Page reviewed: 28 January 2016