Film: 5694

Industry + Work | 1970 | Sound | Colour


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Australia, New South Wales, State Abattoir facility at Homebush.
Shows the entire process, (apart from the killing), from unloading and selling the cattle at market, to the butchering and manufacture of meat products in 1970's.

Ranch. Beef cattle. Cowboy on horse with cows. Car drives up to farmer, asks him questions which the farmer replies silently. Farmer getting his cattle ready for market, narrator asks him if he wants to know what happens to his cattle when they go off to market, narrator says new developments in industry and asks farmer to go and see.
Cattle being unloaded at the Homebush unloading docks. Cattle walking past. Farmer watching cattle, sign pointed out to farmer, sign says at all further stages we will ensure their careful handling, cleanliness, rigid inspection for disease and identification. Sign issued by The Metropolitan Meat Industry Board. Cattle moved into yards, which are said to have been hosed down and inspected every day. Cows unloading off railway car. Cows moving. Cattle moving off train, soundtrack says Homebush has its own station, sidings and shunting yards. Branding iron, cattle being marked with silver paint. Close up of lot numbers on cattle rumps. Cattle to be sold separately marked out with dark blue paints. Vet in yard doing ante-mortem inspection . Vet inspecting cattle by looking at them, soundtrack says any undesirable animals will be marked out for a post-mortem. Close-up of vet, white coat and thick glasses. Close up of yellow tags on tails of cattle. Vet looking around.
Farmer looking at lists of sale. Close up of sign "Homebush services to producers".
Cattle auction at Homebush.
Man blowing whistle. Panning view of the holding yards filled with cattle. Cattle sale, cows in stalls. Men wearing drover’s hats and bidding in auction. Inspecting cattle. Farmer goes down amongst men. Men shouting and bidding for cattle. Auction worker carries branding irons with yellow markers and starts marking a pen of cattle, to signify the purchaser’s number.
Cattle being herded by a man on horseback and a dog to abattoir. Overhead view of the yards. Cattle in holding paddocks with abattoir and market buildings in the background. Cattle inspected in the receiving pens at the abattoir. Close up of vet in hard hat. Cattle and vet in enclosure. Farmer puts on white coat whilst looking at cattle in enclosure.
Homebush Abattoir facilities for workers.
Medical centre, nurse bandages man's hand in clinic. Doctor takes man’s blood pressure. Panning view of the empty dining hall for workers. Lockers in locker room. Men washing hands in water fountain. Man using disposable paper dispenser. Clothes in tumble dryer, man opening dryer and loading clothes in basket.
Butchering of slaughtered cattle in the abattoir.
Farmer wearing white coat and hat. Man checks tail tags on carcasses, man writes down numbers on file. Man writes correlation number on carcass and head, which are separated. Bloody heads of cattle being spray washed, hanging on hooks. Man hosing down rack of heads, barely recognisable as heads. Farmer in head inspection area, goes to watch man checking heads. Close-up of skinned head being sliced even more, checking for parasites, tongue hanging separately. Heads are split and brains removed. Knives being washed. Intestines and bladder sliced off. Cow being hoisted on mechanical device as men slice away at carcass. Cows being shaved, hide being stripped from carcass. Implements being washed and sterilised. Cows carcass being stamped with operator number. Farmer watches as row of carcasses have their internal organs removed. Intestines and stomachs spill onto floor. Close up of man cutting out intestines. Man hosing blood off himself. Knives being cleaned and sterilised. Showers himself and sterilises his boots. Man’s clean boots stand out amidst bloody red carcass. Men checking offal. Close up of offal being checked, lymph nodes checked to indicate condition. Lungs being checked. Heart being checked. Liver being checked. Farmer stares at camera with conveyor belt of offal behind him, carcasses hanging above pile. Different inspector checks. Man pulls out kidneys. Man checking inner cavity. Any carcase not in perfect condition taken out of row and checked further. Farmer meets board member representing Homebush personnel, carcass being cut by mechanical saw in background. Man cuts carcass in half using mechanical saw. Men checking the carcasses. Carcasses being washed with hoses. Close-up of carcass being washed. Carcass being checked and stamped. Stamp to show carcass has passed. Men stamping carcasses. Stamp to show meat is fine for local consumption and export. Meat on conveyor racks moving. Man operating machinery. Close-up of scales showing weight of carcass. Man records weight. Close up of man writing in book. Man weighs another carcass. Farmer checking meat in refrigerator. Farmer looking at carcasses, handed manual on standards for the abattoir. Farmer reads manual looking concerned and nodding. Close up of stamp of ‘Australia 41 Approved’, meaning meat is fit for export. Farmer reads manual, looks at camera. Offal being checked. Close-up of man checking. Inspection of offal. Man slicing bits off carcass. Cleaner cleaning floor with high pressure hose. 3 cleaners hosing down floor with scalding hot water. Floor being cleaned. Men cleaning with hoses. Foreman checks report to see that nothing has been missed off. Sanitation engineer checking other areas and noting down those in need of further attention. High pressure cleaning equipment. Hosing down conveyor belt. Close-up of spraying conveyor. Man wipes down metal surface. Staff sanitation expert with farmer, checking facilities. Man takes swabs off floor. Man swabs saw. Man swabs light.
Sign "scientific services. Administrative office and laboratories". Scientist in laboratory. Swab- sample being shaken. Bunsen burner is alight on the worktop. Scientist puts sample back in rack.
Car driver’s point of view as he drives a vehicle down a street in Homebush. Brief glance across to the man sitting in the passenger seat.
Cold storage of meat and packing facility.
Men walk through area full of cardboard boxes. Men pushing trays of boxes back. Meat hanging up in cold store. Stacks of Edgell French fries in boxes and frozen liquid whole egg in cartons being stored. Women packing bacon, wearing uniforms with Mayfair written on them. Sausage or deli meat being packed. Butchers cutting at carcasses. Meat being packed in boxes. Barrels being stored. Man moving a barrel on a sack barrow. Meat casings being washed.
Processing sheep skins.
Premises marked "Fleece-wools". Skins going through machinery to strip the fleece and cure the pelts. Wool on conveyor belt and being removed from the belt by hand.
Overview of site with cattle being rounded up. Farmer looking at aerial photograph of Homebush abattoir. Close up of Farmer. Plans for new developments. Boards Chairman, Sam Hill. Plans for new developments. Document says Waste Water Treatment. Farmer shakes hands with Mr Hill. Farmer puts on white hat and enters building. Man spraying floor with water. Man clearing meat market.
Wholesale Meat Market.
Meat hanging, porters hoisting meat onto shoulders. Close up of meat hanging off hook. Porters taking meat off hooks. Porter exits room with meat. Porter takes meat off hooks. Porters taking meat from room. Porters loading meat onto lorry before an inspector checks the load.
Farmer watching. Farmer shakes hand with man behind the camera. Film returns to the farmer back on his ranch. Man drives off, leaving farmer in his farm.

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