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Farmers await findings of ACCC Grocery Inquiry

30 July 2008

THE National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) is looking forward to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) providing the results of its much-anticipated Grocery Price Inquiry to the Australian Government tomorrow.

“Farmers are, quite literally, at the bottom of the food supply chain,” NFF Vice-President Charles Burke said. “Once our produce leaves the farm we have no idea where the added costs that consumers bear come from.

“Of course, there are all the additional links in the chain – transport, processing and packaging – before it even gets to the retail end point. Whether there is market failure, inefficiencies, a lack of competition or anti-competitive practices along the chain, we have no way of knowing.

“That’s what we hope the ACCC’s investigation will shed light on and give farmers and consumers the answers to what precise domestic supply factors are driving higher grocery prices.

“What we do know is what farmers are paid at the farm-gate and what families pay at the check-out are worlds apart. Our consistent focus throughout the Inquiry has been for the ACCC to examine the entire supply chain, not just the retail end.

“I think it’s fair to that say all Australians are expecting transparency, competition and fairness issues along the supply chain to be fully examined, and the ACCC certainly has the powers to get that job done.

“We are keen to see the results of the ACCC’s six-month Inquiry. The findings hold the key to identifying remedies to any market concerns behind higher grocery prices and for farmers and consumers regaining confidence in retail pricing.”

[ENDS]

Media Enquiries: Brett Heffernan on (02) 6273 3855 or 0408 448 250.

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