Farmer's response to vegans: 'It's not the whole picture'
A FREESTONE dairy farmer has called the Queensland Government's new laws to stop animal activists from invading farms "a joke”.
Bill McVeigh's property north of Warwick did not become a target for protesters yesterday, but he said the picture presented by activists was "only a snapshot in time”.
"They will pick out the worst of the worst and play that up as what happens full-time,” he said.
"They don't show the whole picture, they show the picture they want to show.”
Mr McVeigh said giving police the power to issue on-the-spot fines for trespassing on farm properties would do little to abate the unlawful intrusions that many farmers had come to fear.
"That is a joke, isn't it,” he said.
"Are they really going to pay them? Unless they are arrested and locked up for a couple of days the joke is on the Queensland Government. It's not going to do anything.”
He said everyone was entitled to their opinion, but protests could be damaging to an industry that was already hurting.
"I know myself how much time and money you've spent trying to keep your animals alive and then they come along and tell you you're not looking after your animals properly,” he said.
"You just think, 'well, I'm out, or I am done, I am finished'. Sometimes I feel like that.”
Running a dairy that has been in his family for 70 years, MrMcVeigh said the industry was highly regulated and most farmers were compliant with animal welfare standards.
"It doesn't bother me. I have nothing to hide,” he said.
But negative publicity around agriculture was skewed, MrMcVeigh said.
"At the end of the day everyone has the right to have their say, but going onto people's places, it is just looking for exposure,” he said.
"This will get more exposure than the milk prices.”
Animal rights activist Chris Delforce called for more transparency in the meat and livestock industry.
To see video footage of the altercation on a Freestone farm visit www.warwickdailynews.com.au