About the kangaroo industry
Are Kangaroos farmed?
There is no farming of kangaroos in Australia. Kangaroos are the ultimate free-range animals, they range over extensive pastoral areas of Australia and are harvested in their own environment. Therefore kangaroo meat is not ever exposed to human intervention, chemicals, antibiotics or growth hormones.
Kangaroo management program
Kangaroos are a unique indigenous species, where as there are 48 species of kangaroo (macropods) only 5 of the most abundant species are commercially harvested. Kangaroo numbers are now greater than ever before. Due to increase in kangaroo numbers it has become necessary to commercially harvest 10% - 15% of the population yearly to prevent economic and environmental damage. Strict controls ensure that no more than the quota number is actually harvested.
Through careful management the Australian Kangaroo Industry has developed to its current level where Australia processes millions of tonnes of high quality meat as well as a large range of leather products. Each Australian state that commercially harvests kangaroos must have in place a Federal Government approved management plan. These plans must be updated every 3 years and aerial surveys of the population are conducted every year. After assessing the total populations and trends in population numbers a sustainable quota as to the number of kangaroos that can be harvested for that year. Kangaroos are harvested only from primary producing properties in Australia.
The Kangaroo industry today is tightly regulated by the Australian Government's Primary Industries and the Australian Quarantine Inspection Services. Audits and inspections are conducted routinely to ensure compliance with the State's regulations and the Australian Standards. Macro Meats-Gourmet Game prides itself on being an active and responsible member of the Kangaroo Industry Association of Australia.
Is Kangaroo meat safe to eat?
Kangaroos suffer from fewer diseases and parasites than conventional meat animals as they live and graze in less intensive groups. Because kangaroos are not subjected to the same animal husbandry practices as other production animals, they have little exposure to agricultural and veterinary chemicals. In addition to this, government veterinarians take tissue samples during the official post mortem inspection at processing plants. The tissue samples are laboratory tested as part of Australia's national residue survey, an ongoing survey progam designed to provide independent government verification of the residue status of all export meaet, including kangaroo meat.
Every wild game processing plant in Australia, must be registered and meet the stringent conditions in the export control orders and the Australian standard for the hygienic production of wild game meat (kangaroo) for human consumption. This system involves the checking and verification of risks throughout the food chain. Using specifically trained and accredited field harvesters, field depot chiller operators, accredited transporters, export registered wild game processors, state food authority officers and on plant and senior government veterinarians.
The Australian government requires all wild game processing plants to use microbiolocial testing every day. Macro Meats' processing plant delivers the highest standard of quality control. Macro Meats operates all it's processes to the Australian Quarantine Ispection Services (AQIS) standard of food safety (HACCP) and has AQIS veterinarians and senior inspectors on it's premises full time.
Animal welfare is a key part of an approved safety program and includes adherence to the National Code of Practice for the Humane Shooting of Kangaroos and Wallabies for Commercial Purposes, or the Commercial Code. This code was developed after extensive consultation between government, animal welfare groups, industry, the scientific community and the public. It requires that field harvestors do not shoot if there is any doubt that they will achieve a sudden and humane death by a single shot to the head. Macro Meat's policy is to not harvest kangaroos identified as female premortem.
For more information about kangaroo management, here are some useful links:
Kangaroo Harvest Fact Sheet
National Code of Practice for the Humane Shooting of Kangaroos and Wallabies for Commercial Purposes
Population, quota and harvest statistics