Many of the farms currently being targeted by activists are run by families, not faceless corporations, as activists like Aussie Farms would have you believe, said AgForce Cattle President Will Wilson.
Mr Wilson said he respected animal groups’ right to protest, but that they had no right to break the law and threaten farmers and their families in order to express their opinion.
“We’re talking about farmers – hard-working Australians who just want to be allowed to go about their absolutely ethical and legal business, it’s that simple.
“Peaceful protest is one thing, but trespassing onto someone else’s property, frightening children and animals, breaching biosecurity measures that are there to protect everyone – this is illegal activity.
“The activists are signalling that to get their message across they’re prepared to do whatever it takes. Even if that means operating outside the law.
“But whatever happens, whatever measures the activists take, we’re telling our members and anyone who is subjected to attack, to remain calm, to let the Queensland Police Service handle it.
Mr Wilson said it was an individual’s personal choice whether they decided to eat meat or other animal products, or they didn’t, but that no one had the right to forcibly and illegally push that view onto others.
“And no one has the right to affect someone else’s livelihood or personal safety either,” Mr Wilson said.
“There is a genuine feeling of fear among the producers I’ve spoken to. It’s spreading. No one knows where these activists are going to turn up next.
“Australian farmers have the highest standards of animal health and welfare in the world and we would be proud to show any genuine visitors around our property. But the activists carrying out their intimidatory tactics weren’t invited. I’m not aware of anyone asking if they can come on to a farm to look around.
“The announcement by Minister Littleproud and the Federal Government, which will bring the Aussie Farms website under the Privacy Act, is therefore welcomed.
“We’d also like to see the Queensland Government give stronger powers to the Queensland Police to do more to actually penalise the people doing the trespassing by beefing up and enforcing trespass laws.
“Anything that brings peace of mind and safety to the farmers and their families simply going about their business, feeding and clothing the people of Australia and the many more around the world, is of course welcome.”