AUSTRALIA - The Senate Economics References Committee inquiry into Australia’s dairy industry has been held in Canberra to investigate solutions to Australia's dairy crisis.
Australian Dairy Farmers (ADF) Acting President, David Basham said the senate inquiry, provided an opportunity for ADF to present Senators with possible solutions to protect farmers in the future from the risks that have been exposed by the events of earlier this year.
“This past year, the dairy industry has gone through a difficult time, however, we must remember that we are a resilient industry with a long, sustainable future ahead and our profitability depends greatly on the continued support of the Australian public.
"ADF in partnership with our state member organisations have continued to highlight both short term and long terms solutions to relieve some of the pressures faced by our dairy farmers,” said Mr Basham.
Proposed solutions offered to the senate inquiry by ADF include:
- The development of the Code of Best Practice on milk supply contractual agreements to ensure transparency and fairness in milk price arrangements
- To ensure that the ACCC review identifies and investigates sharing risk along the supply chain, supply agreements and contracts, competition, bargaining and trading practices in the industry and the effect of world retail prices on profitability
- Incorporating an effects test to show the impact of anti-competitive behaviour
- The implementation of a world dairy commodity pricing index and educational programme for farmers to better understand the impacts of the world market price and impact on the domestic market
“Dairy farmers deserve fair returns at the farm gate, as well as transparency in milk price arrangements and supply contracts. We urge the industry to work together with government to better balance risk along the dairy supply chain, especially when it comes to managing the effects of volatile world prices," Mr Basham said.
The final report from the Senate Inquiry will be available on 24 February, 2017.
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