Regulation of poultry production

Page last updated: Thursday, 3 March 2022 - 4:13pm

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

Legislation regulating the poultry industry covers a wide array of issues ranging from disease control, food health and safety, the environment (odour and noise emissions), to agricultural chemicals, veterinary chemicals, poultry manure and animal welfare.

Egg or poultry meat production is covered by a number of State and Commonwealth laws and regulations. All poultry and egg producers, whether backyard or commercial, are required to comply with the laws and regulations relevant to their business regardless of the type of production system (organic, free range, barn, cage).

Local government requirements also cover all poultry including backyard flocks.

Acts and Regulations are available from the State Law Publisher or Australian Government Com Law website.

Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Western Australia (DPIRD) responsibilities

DPIRD  has responsibility for livestock biosecurity (disease prevention, disease surveillance and eradication or control), animal welfare, chemical residues and soil and land conservation. DPIRD administers the following Acts and regulations relevant to poultry producers:

Regulation by other government agencies

This summary of regulation covers important areas but is not exhaustive.

Different local government jurisdictions have varying requirements for keeping of production animals. Your local city, shire or town office can provide details.



Statute and Agency

Transporting poultry (load size and containment)




Road Traffic Act 1994
(Western Australian Police Service)

Agricultural and veterinary chemicals


Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Act 1994

(Australian Department of Agriculture

Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA))

Use, storage, handling and disposal of pesticides


Health (Pesticides) Regulations 2011

 (Department of Health)

Storage of fuels, solvents, explosive and dangerous goods


Dangerous Goods Safety Act 2004

(Department of Mines and Petroleum)




Environmental Code of Practice for Poultry Farms in Western Australia (May 2004)

(Department of Water WA)


Environmental Management and Cleaner Production Directory for Small and Medium Businesses: A guide to pollution prevention (April 2005)

(Swan River Trust)


Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999

(Australian Department of Environment)


Environment Protection Act 1986

(Department of Environment Regulation WA)

Odour emissions



Odour Methodology Guideline (2002)

(Environmental Protection Authority

Department of Environmental Regulation WA)

Noise emissions



Environmental Protection (Noise) Regulations 1997

(Environmental Protection Authority

Department of Environmental Regulation WA)

NPI substance emissions, i.e. ammonia


Environmental Protection (NEPMNPI) Regulations 1998

(Environmental Protection Authority

Department of Environmental Regulation WA)

Licence to take surface water and groundwater


Rights in Water and Irrigation Act 1914

(Department of Water WA)

Development in Public Drinking Water Source Areas


Metropolitan Water Supply, Sewerage and Drainage (MWSS & D) Act 1909 or
Country Areas Water Supply (CAWS) Act 1947

(Department of Water WA)

Approval for developments that may affect the Swan - Canning estuary


Swan River Trust Act 1988

(Swan River Trust)

Impact on the values and ecology of land or natural waters


Environmental Protection Act 1986

(Environmental Protection Authority

Department of Environmental Regulation WA)

Registration of offensive trades; handling of poultry manure


Health Act 1911 (as amended)

(Department of Health)

Sale, supply and use of poultry manure


Health (Poultry Manure) Regulations 2001

(Department of Health)

Safety in the workplace - Worksafe


Occupational Safety and Health Act 1984

(Department of Commerce)

Food standards


Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code

(Food Standards Australia and New Zealand)



Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)

Food hygiene and safety


Food Act 2008

(Department of Health)

Subdivision of land



Planning and Development Act 2005

(WA Planning Commission, Department of Planning)

Land zoning and development approval -



Planning and Development Act 2005

(your local Shire or Council)

Land use planning


Statement of Planning Policy No. 4.3: Poultry Farms Policy (June 2004)
of new poultry farms.

(WA Planning Commission, Department of Planning)

Useful links for egg producers

Egg producers do not need a licence. The egg industry in WA was deregulated on 2 July 2005. However, commercial producers must comply with egg labelling guidelines and the Food Act 2008 and all other relevant legislation. More information is available from the following websites:

Producers also have a legal obligation to report the presence or suspicion of reportable diseases of poultry, particularly:

Useful links for meat chicken producers

Production and supply of meat chickens to a processor in WA has been deregulated. Advice on chicken meat production can be obtained from a chicken meat processor or:

Producers have a legal obligation to report the presence or suspicion of reportable diseases of poultry, particularly:

Poultry feed and poultry litter must not be fed to ruminants

Poultry feed and poultry litter must not be fed to ruminants (animals such as cattle, sheep, goats and deer). This is essential to maintain and demonstrate Australia’s freedom from bovine spongiform encephalitis (BSE) and to protect vital export markets. See the ruminant feed ban webpage for further information.

More information

For industry planning information, contact:

Pat Page, email or telephone +61 (0)8 9881 0222

or Jessica Turnbull, email or telephone: +61 (0)8 9881 0210

For poultry biosecurity information, contact:

Telephone: +61 (0)8 9368 3342