THE state’s environmental watchdog has handed-down more than $52,000 worth of fines after two abattoirs were busted illegally giving animal waste to local landowners.
The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has issued penalties to Teys, Thomas Foods, Poverty Pastoral totalling $45,000 and a landholder $7,500.
EPA Regional Director North Adam Gilligan said in the two separate cases, manure, waste sludge and paunch (the undigested stomach contents of the livestock) were transported from abattoirs to properties in the area, for use in a composting operation and as a soil fertiliser.
“If these waste products are not managed appropriately, they may cause environmental issues or spread animal diseases,” Mr Gilligan said.
“This is particularly the case with paunch.
“The regulations are in place to protect the environment and health of the community.
“It is important that both waste producers and land owners wishing to use these products to improve their soils ensure they have appropriate approvals in place.”
Waste from Teys Australia’s beef abattoir in Tamworth was transported to multiple properties in Uralla owned by Poverty Pastoral Pty Ltd for direct application to land.
Both Teys Australia and Poverty Pastoral were fined $15,000 each.
Waste was also transported from Thomas Foods International’s Lamb abattoir in Tamworth to a local landowner, who was not licenced to take the waste, for composting on June 16, 2017.
The company was fined $15,000 and the landowner was fined $7,500.
Mr Gilligan said Teys and Thomas Foods should be aware of the regulations regarding waste disposal. “Landowners also have a responsibility to determine the legality of any material they are accepting,” he said.
The parties involved in both incidents are carrying-out appropriate treatments for the waste prior to use or disposal and seeking relevant approvals.