The introduction of cameras is one of six new standards that have been agreed upon by exporters and Vietnamese importers.
Alison Penfold, from the Australian Livestock Exporters Council (ALEC), said the rollout of cameras was a world first for the live export industry.
"We will be putting CCTVs into every feedlot and abattoir in every Vietnamese ESCAS supply chain," she said.
"We've already got about 35 cameras operating in the Vietnamese market already. Around 80 facilities will be added."
The live cattle trade to Vietnam has boomed in recent years, growing from around 2,000 head exported a few years ago to over 180,000 animals in 2014.
Ms Penfold admitted the extreme growth had put pressure on the industry's ability to meet animal welfare requirements of ESCAS and there had been animals leaking out of some approved supply chains, which had brought about the new set of standards.
"We don't support leakage and we want to address it," she said.
"This market is experiencing growing pains and we're going to fight to make it sustainable, because it's such an important market and it's so important for industry to have markets like Vietnam.
"These new standards and conditions on traceability and control will allow us to get to the heart of dealing with these problems that are putting this great market at risk.
"We need to show these supply chains that we mean business. If they [importers] want Australian cattle, they've got to meet the standards and stick by them.
"If they don't, then they're out. If the standards are broken, the exporter will respond with a suspension [of cattle supply].
"If it's a significant welfare breach, exporters have agreed they'll all support the suspension of that facility, meaning no new cattle will be sent to that facility.
"The suspension for a serious welfare breach is six months, but could be longer."
Ms Penfold said some Vietnamese facilities had already been suspended because they breached some of the new standards.
When asked who would monitor the CCTV footage from abattoirs and feedlots, Ms Penfold said that would be decided in the "planning process currently taking place".
Summary of new welfare standards for live cattle trade to Vietnam
- Access Standard: An exporter and their representative must have unrestricted access to all facilities within their supply chain.
- Traceability and Reporting Standard: An exporter must be able to individually identify the location of all animals in the supply chain through an electronic and visual traceability system.
- Equipment Standard: Essential equipment used to trace and handle livestock must be maintained in good repair and effective working order and auditable maintenance and replacement system must be in place.
Feedlot: The facility must have the following items in good repair and working order:
- At least one RFID scanner
- A cattle crush
- At least one stunner (and a minimum of 20 cartridges)
- At least 3 cattle talkers
- The facility must have a maintenance and repair plan and log of activities that is accessible to Supply Chain Officers for verification purposes
Abattoir: The facility must have the following items in good repair and working order:
- At least one RFID scanner
- At least one restraining box
- One stunner and one backup stunner for each restraining box
- At least three cattle talkers
The facility must have a maintenance and repair plan and log that is accessible to Supply Chain Officers for verification purposes. Supply Chain Officers must carry a spare stunner and scanner at all times.
- SOP Documentation Standard: Each facility must have knowledge of and display Standard Operating Procedures
- Human Resources Standard: Each supply chain must have trained and dedicated staff at each critical control point to oversee, verify and audit animal welfare and traceability
CCTV Monitoring Standard: Working real time CCTV at key control points with remote monitoring and recording capability
Feedlot: Working CCTV at discharge and loading, and crush/raceway
Abattoir: Working CCTV at unloading ramp, lairage and restraining box
RSPCA concerns about Vietnamese market remains
In a statement to ABC Rural the RSPCA's chief scientist, Dr Bidda Jones said the organisation remained "extremely concerned" about the leakage of cattle from Vietnamese supply chains.
"The RSPCA has not yet seen the standards proposed by exporters using Vietnamese supply chains," she said.
"However, we are extremely concerned that the situation in Vietnam has deteriorated to the point where industry itself has had to step in, in the absence of any regulatory action from government.
"This is a market that has gone from zero to 89 ESCAS-approved abattoirs in less than two years, a rate of expansion that always carried a high risk of adverse outcomes - and it seems that things have gone badly wrong as a result.
"While the addition of CCTV cameras is a welcome move, it must be accompanied by regular monitoring to check for incidents of animal cruelty, and cameras do not replace the need for comprehensive staff training and good stockmanship.
"The RSPCA encourages exporters to make the vision from CCTV cameras available in order to demonstrate that minimum standards in Vietnamese facilities are being met, and urges the government to seriously consider rolling out this requirement in ESCAS-approved abattoirs in all markets."