Media statement re: local growers not being paid

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Media statement provided to the NewsMail on Wednesday, June 29, 2016 in relation to local growers not being paid:

“While it would be inappropriate to comment on specific individual cases, my office is aware of this issue.

“The Coalition Government established an Agriculture Enforcement and Engagement Unit within the ACCC to conduct investigations and engagement in rural and regional areas with funding provided through the Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper.”

“I have been in contact with Agriculture Commissioner Mick Keogh who confirmed the ACCC would look to hold an urgent meeting in Hinkler next month so producers can directly inform the Agriculture Enforcement and Engagement Unit about the key competition and fair trading issues that are affecting them.”

“There are also existing avenues that growers can take if they are having problems of this nature.

“The mandatory Horticulture Code of Conduct includes stipulations around Terms of Trade between growers and wholesale market agents. The ACCC has a Horticulture Mediation Adviser service in place which can provide mediation services for parties with a dispute under the Horticulture Code.

“The Horticulture Code of Conduct was recently reviewed, with public and industry consultation, with the recommendations of the review submitted to Government for consideration.”

BACKGROUND:

Earlier this year, the Coalition Government appointed a dedicated Agriculture Commissioner – Mick Keogh – to the ACCC to identify and make decisions on competition, efficiency, transparency and trading matters in agriculture markets.

https://www.accc.gov.au/about-us/australian-competition-consumer-commission/accc-chair-commissioners#commissioner-mick-keogh

Agriculture Enforcement and Engagement Unit: https://www.accc.gov.au/media-release/acccs-new-agriculture-unit-to-focus-on-supply-chains

Horticulture Code of Conduct:

https://www.accc.gov.au/business/industry-codes/horticulture-code-of-conduct

https://www.accc.gov.au/business/industry-codes/horticulture-code-of-conduct/horticulture-mediation-adviser-hma

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