Call to extend kangaroo pet food trial

A SOUTH-WEST processor wants Victoria’s kangaroo pet food trial extended to give its business and workers more certainty.

About 71,000 kangaroos across the state have been used to make pet food as part of the trial to reduce waste from legal culling.

The trial, which covers 16 local government areas, is due to end in March next year. The initial two-year trial was extended by two years.

Victorian Pet Food Processors operations manager David Preece – who has plants in Hamilton, Camperdown and Seymour – said he could not finish a planned extension of his Hamilton facility until the trial’s future was certain.

He said the trial had provided jobs for about 25 people and provided other workers with more hours.

Last week tenders for a state government aerial study of kangaroo populations across Victoria closed.

Department of Environment Land Water and Planning Barwon South West program manager of resource protection and management Mark Breguet said kangaroos controlled under the Authority to Control Wildlife (ATCW) permit system in trial areas could be used for pet food by processors approved and licensed by DELWP and Primesafe.

“The trial is not intended to increase the number of kangaroos controlled, rather it is to reduce the waste of carcasses from kangaroos that would have been controlled regardless of the trial,” he said. “The trial does not change the requirement for a landholder applying for an ATCW to demonstrate that kangaroos are causing damage to their property.

“The number of kangaroos authorised for control and the number of ATCW permits will continue to be closely monitored as part of the extended trial.”

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