5 Sep 2012

Two live sheep shipments from Australia rejected

6:53 am on 5 September 2012

Two Australian sheep shipments have been turned back from Middle Eastern ports, because of the disease scabby mouth.

The Ocean Drover, carrying 22,000 sheep, was blocked from unloading in Bahrain about 10 days ago. The sheep had already been on the water for 33 days.

The ABC reports Kuwait has also rejected a shipment exported by the Australian company Emanuel's on the Kuwaiti ship Al Shuwaikh.

It has a carrying capacity of 50,000 and was due to dock a week ago.

The ABC reports a memorandum of understanding put in place after the Cormo Express disaster of 2003, where 6,000 sheep died, is meant to protect animals involved in the live export trade.

But the new cases suggest procedures for animal welfare in the live export trade have failed.

The Department of Agriculture says the shipments are both infected with the disease scabby mouth.