Agriculture

Agricultural Pricing for Domestic Markets

Farmers are price takers and when it comes to international trade this is certainly the case for bulk commodities.

The domestic market has the capacity to pay more for local produce but it is the retailer that determines the sale price and sets limits on what to pay producers and manufacturers.

ACP believes it is in Australia’s best interests to keep our farmers and food producers viable and to empower the ACCC to ensure domestic retailers do not gouge consumers or rip off producers.

Food Safety

Australia enjoys strict controls on how we grow our food, how it is processed and what chemicals can be used throughout the supply chain.

Food imports need similar controls; thus, we shall be strengthening AQIS.

Food labelling must give consumers a clear idea of where the food comes from. Just having a percentage of Australian grown content is not clear.

We need percentage by country of origin. For example, 80% Australian Grown/20% Chinese Origin gives a clear guide to the consumer whereas current labelling would only require 80% Australian displayed.

Australia has developed an excellent reputation as a safe and quality supplier of food and we proudly badge our exports. Other countries need to develop equivalent brand acceptance and not hide behind deceptive labelling.

Better staffing of quarantine services with stronger enforcement of restrictions on imported food products to protect both consumers and food producers. 

Australia has high standards which are good for us.  Our borders are our only real line of defence against products that come into our country and do us harm.  We support better staffing and resources for our quarantine services to make sure that whatever is imported, meets our standards, not someone else’s.

We also believe that enforcement is a strong deterrent.  Stronger enforcement will have no impact on those who import and comply with our requirements but it will have a real impact on those trying to work their ways around our laws.

Better funding of agricultural research and improved availability of new technology to farmers.

Better access to research and technology will help equip our farmers with new ways of doing things in an increasingly global market.  If they do well, we do well. They employ people and buy products, the benefits of which flow right through Australia’s economy.

As a party that looks towards building a better Australia, (ACP) supports increased investment in R&D. As such, ACP supports better funding for agriculture research and ensuring new technology is showcased to our farmers.

Support for the live export trade and for any policy initiatives that improve associated infrastructure and animal welfare standards.

The Gillard Government’s reaction to the live trade export at the whim of animal rights groups was deplorable.  It compromised our businesses, our communities and our economy.  The problem is some animal welfare groups are more interested in animal politics than the animals themselves and that has become obvious including with a high-profile animal rights group that somehow manages to continue receiving government funding.

Any decent farmer will tell you that the welfare of their animals is paramount to the health of their business. It’s basic logic.  ACP supports good animal welfare practices which sit well with our need to export.  These standards need to be set by the government and not influenced by self-interest groups.

Better, and more equitable, management of water resources and entitlements. 

ACP has a long history of supporting irrigators and the right to manage dams on farms.   Water resources continue to be scarce on occasion and it is incumbent on the government to ensure those resources are managed equitably.

Rather than rely on the knowledge and expertise of bureaucrats who live and work in the city, the Country Party would support a broader look at how our water resources and entitlements should be managed.  Only then will the real expertise be seen.

Our irrigation water savings brochure for the Goulburn – Murray systems: View here