Cows and sheep in New Zealand will no longer suffer through extensive, confined journeys at sea thanks to the country’s ban on live animal exports.

The ban was first announced in 2021 but gave farmers time to transition – hence the 2-year wait until the ban’s implementation. The declared ban followed the horrific sinking of the Gulf Livestock 1 in 2020 that caused the deaths of 6,000 cows and 41 people, The Guardian reported.

“Our position on the map means that the journey to northern hemisphere markets will always be a long one,” said New Zealand’s Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “This brings unavoidable animal welfare challenges.”

In 2022, New Zealand shipped nearly 135,000 cows, who likely endured a grueling sea journey of thousands of miles.

We at Lady Freethinker have been awaiting this day since we initially reported this news, and we are glad the deadline has arrived and that New Zealand followed through on its promise.

While this is great progress for animals, we would like to see a ban on live animal exports implemented worldwide. Sign our petition urging the European Union to follow in New Zealand’s footsteps and end all live animal exports.

SIGN: End Cruel and Illegal EU Live Animal Exports