Australian Cows Butchered in Indonesian Slaughterhouses

Update (April 10, 2024): When PETA Asia investigators went inside slaughterhouses in Indonesia in 2021, they found workers viciously killing Australian cattle there. The Australian meat industry “live exports”, or ships cows overseas to countries with weaker slaughterhouse regulations, such as Indonesia, to maximize profits. Indonesia has virtually no animal protection laws, so workers often kill cows with cheap, painful methods like those shown in the new footage, which are illegal in Australia. Despite Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) measures put in place by the Australian government, new whistleblower footage obtained by PETA Asia confirms that Australian animals are still being savagely killed in Indonesia.

PETA Asia’s follow-up footage shows workers dragging and butchering cows who were still conscious and kicking as well as two cows with Australian ear tags thrashing on a slaughterhouse floor after workers sliced their throats open.

If the government won’t act to stop this cruelty to cows, what can you do as an individual?

Original post: March 19, 2024

Chilling PETA Asia footage of abuse of Australian cows in Indonesian slaughterhouses has put Australia’s live-export industry in the spotlight.

We’ll keep it 💯 with you: The live-export industry is the meat and leather industries. Because the leather made in Indonesia is exported globally, if you buy leather, you may be wearing or sitting on the skins of the same animals you’re about to watch writhe in pain. 😟

And get this: All the facilities visited by PETA Asia investigators are part of the Australian gov’s Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS). 🤦 If the footage made your heart break for cows, please stop buying leather rn! 👏

Botched Stunning or None at All

PETA Asia investigators visited seven randomly selected slaughterhouses in Indonesia in April and May 2021.

These investigators saw steers and bulls forced into restraint boxes and shot in the head with captive-bolt guns—apparently to try to stun them before their throats were cut. 😨 But the cows were often fully aware of what was taking place. They slammed their bodies against the metal chute that they were trapped in, unable to turn around and escape. 😢

PETA-owned image for the Australian cows feature from
PETA-owned image for the Australian cows feature from

One steer, obvi still conscious after being shot in the head, was jabbed 64 times in the face and torso with a steel rod in an apparent attempt to force him to stand back up so a worker could shoot him again. 😡

The steer’s tail was twisted again and again until the worker reported that all the bones in it were broken. In a last-ditch attempt to move him, they yanked on his broken tail 12 times. 😰 Some cows weren’t stunned at all—they were simply physically restrained before their throats were slit.

PETA-owned image for the Australian cows feature from

Shoddy Stunning Attempts Left Animals Still Able to Feel Pain and Gasping for Air

Slaughterhouse workers viciously yanked or purposely stepped on animals’ tails, apparently to try to check for consciousness. Some cows still kicked, but workers butchered them without attempting to make them unconscious. 😭

PETA-owned image for the Australian cows feature from

Some steers were still moving and their heads were dangling by a strip of flesh after their throats had been slit, but workers hung them by the neck on metal hooks. 😱 Investigators saw animals blinking after their throats were cut, gasping for air as blood filled their airways. Some suffered this way for up to 12 minutes after being shot with a captive-bolt gun. 😤

10 Years of Wake-Up Calls

Workers spilled the tea that the cows being slaughtered came from Australia. These animals— most of whom wore Australian National Livestock Identification System ear tags—are just a tiny percentage of the millions of animals abused and slaughtered in Australia’s live-export trade. Australia exported more than 1.8 million animals in 2020, and most of them were cows. 😯

PETA-owned image for the Australian cows feature from

It’s been a decade since Animals Australia, an animal protection organization, exposed cruelty in the live-export trade to Indonesia on national TV via the program Four Corners. 📺 After the show aired, the ESCAS traceability program was put in place.

But the program has been a huge bust. 😒 It was supposed to stop this kind of cruelty, but it clearly hasn’t achieved this goal. There have been 184 reports of noncompliance (just reports—the number of incidents would be much higher) since ESCAS was set up. ‼️

Your Actions Matter

The Australian gov should be prepping for a future without live exports, but it isn’t taking action. 🙄 When animals are crammed onto ships as if they were lifeless objects and sold to be slaughtered, how can we expect them to be treated as if their pain mattered? 🤷

So we have to look for a solution from the consumer perspective. If the gov won’t act, what can we do as individuals?

PETA-owned image for the Australian cows feature from

If people keep buying animals’ flesh or skin, producers will keep thinking this industry is acceptable and has a sustainable future. Putting cows through unbearable pain is 100% not acceptable, and you can help change the market and the lives of animals every time you open your wallet. 💸The leather industry will continue abusing and killing cows as long as there’s a profit—so keep the cash away by choosing never to buy anything made of leather. 🙅

Your decision to go vegan can help save countless animals from extreme suffering, including in the leather industry, and you don’t have to do it alone. Order a free “Guide to Going Vegan” for the recipes, shopping lists, and tips you need to make the animal-friendly transition. 😊

Text peta2 to 30933 for ways to help animals, tips on compassionate living, and more!

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