About the Livestock Management Act

The Livestock Management Act 2010 provides a framework to achieve nationally consistent animal welfare, biosecurity and traceability standards. It provides assurance to customers and the community regarding livestock management practices and assists in maintaining productivity and market access for livestock businesses.

The Act affects anyone owning, managing or working with livestock in any capacity.


The objectives of the Livestock Management Act are to:

  • Legislate standards relating to the management of livestock.
  • Recognise existing compliance arrangements demonstrating high livestock management standards and provide a mechanism for establishing co-regulatory arrangements.
  • Encourage implementation of approved quality assurance programs and/or equivalent compliance arrangements.
  • Improve community understanding of livestock management standards.
  • Reduce biosecurity risks, including those arising from unlawful entry by trespassers, by establishing a voluntary framework for livestock producers to require visitors to follow prescribed biosecurity measures.


The Act provides two compliance regimes:

  • Applies to those not operating under an approved quality assurance program, where inspection and offences will directly apply.
  • Establishes the co-regulatory arrangement where a monitoring and joint reporting regime will apply.


The Bill was introduced in December 2009. The Act took effect as particular standards are developed and agreed to nationally. The integration of the first set of standards, Australian Standards and Guidelines for the Welfare of Animals – Land Transport, commenced in early 2010. The national standards were introduced over the subsequent five year period.


The Livestock Management Act is driven by recommendations from several national regulatory reviews to:

  • meet changing market, customer and community expectations
  • develop nationally consistent standards that everyone must meet
  • harmonise delivery and enforcement
  • minimise regulatory burden on industry
  • recognise industry quality assurance programs as mechanisms for demonstrating standards are met.

The need for national consistency was endorsed by the Primary Industries Ministerial Council (PIMC).

Livestock Management Amendment (Animal Activism) Act 2022

In 2022, the Victorian Government introduced changes to the Livestock Management Act and Livestock Management Regulations 2021 to address the serious impacts of trespass on Victorian farms and the significant biosecurity risks that breaches from animal activists can pose.

The voluntary framework will support farmers to implement important biosecurity measures, such as requiring visitors to gain consent to enter or remain on their property and to not interfere with livestock.

Livestock producers choosing to implement the framework must have a Biosecurity Management Plan (BMP), containing mandatory content, and compliant signage in place. The mandatory elements of the BMP can be integrated into an on-farm biosecurity plan or easily be included using a BMP coversheet.

The framework establishes offences for people (e.g. trespassers) who do not follow the prescribed biosecurity measures.

The Livestock Management Regulations 2021 have been updated and this framework has now been implemented. These changes came into effect on 31 August 2022.

More information about the framework can be found at Changes to the Livestock Management Act 2010.

Page last updated: 08 Aug 2023