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Milk Price Inquiry Response Fails WA Dairy Industry

06 February 2012

AUSTRALIA - The Western Australian Farmers Federation (WAFarmers) has condemned the Federal Government’s response to the 2011 Senate Inquiry into the impacts of supermarket price decisions on the dairy industry and the 2010 ‘Milking it For All It’s Worth’ Senate Inquiry.

After two years of inquiries and conclusive evidence of impacts on dairy farmers, the Federal Government is yet to take any real action.

The Federal Government’s response failed to commit to the Senate recommendation of a review into the Western Australia, New South Wales and Queensland dairy industries.

WAFarmers Dairy Section President, Peter Evans, said: “The ACCC has repeatedly proven to be ineffective and powerless against the tactics of the major supermarkets, yet the Federal Government is continuing to hide behind the ACCC.”

“The response from the Federal Government demonstrates a complete disregard for the future sustainability of the WA dairy industry,” Mr Evans said.

“The Federal Government has failed to recognise the difference between exports based states such as Victoria and primarily domestic consumption states such as Western Australia.”

“We call on the Federal Government to explain how ‘the future sustainability of the dairy industry across Australia depends to a large extent on its ability to remain competitive in a global dairy market’ within a Western Australian context.”

Independent research in Western Australia shows that the reduction in the milk price to $1 per litre and subsequent transition to private label products removes $25.2million from the dairy supply chain on an annual basis.

WAFarmers believes the Federal Government’s drive to provide consumers with cheap food fails to recognise the impact it is having on Australian farmers and undervalues farmers’ role in food security.

WAFarmers calls upon the Federal Government to support the dairy industry’s recommendation for an enforceable and mandatory Code of Conduct for supermarkets that will cover the entire value chain, from farmer to retailer.

TheCattleSite News Desk



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