ACGC Responds to NFF Interim Report on Code of Conduct; Allan Fels Identifies a Problem with Prices

One month ago, the NFF Interim Report recommended a Mandatory Code of Conduct for poultry meat growers. The report can be found HERE

ACGC has responded HERE

The NFF report identified that:

  • There is an imbalance of power between growers and processors
  • Supermarkets have thrown their support behind a mandatory Code and are willing to state this publicly.
  • The most efficient way to provide countervailing power is likely to be a Mandatory Code.

ACGC has noted that:

  • the timelines for the project have been too slow
  • growers only receive around 3% of the retail price of poultry, so prices are unlikely to rise if there is a mandatory code
  • the wording of the proposed mandatory Code is generally OK, but does leave some things out.
  • the report appears to have “swallowed whole” the processor allegations and claims without analysis and just plonked them into the report with no critical review – which ACGC has now provided.

In the meantime, on 7th Feb, Prof Allan Fels released an ACTU sponsored report that identifies that:price rises for business

  • prices have risen by an extraordinary amount since CoViD, largely due to the lack of competition in many sectors.
  • that government monopoly and industry concentration, particularly duopolies are resulting in price rises high than that which would be seen even with a cartel
  • that the Food and Grocery Code of Practice, which is currently voluntary, should be made mandatory – which is an interesting commentary on voluntary Codes that is useful to growers,
  • that government needs to take immediate action in the ChildCare, Energy, Aviation, Banking, Energy, Shipping costs affecting FNQ and NT, Food/Grocery, Electric Vehicles, Pharmaceuticals and “out of pocket” medical expenses sectors.

On that basis, we have calculated that growers only receive around 3% of the retail cost of chicken, considering the different value-added cuts and using supermarket retail pricing. The lends the lie to processor protestations that a Code will “dramatically increase the price of chicken”.

NOW is the time to let you elected MP know that we NEED THIS MANDATORY CODE! You are an elector, you have the right to visit your MP and make your voice heard. THIS IS LITERALLY “NOW OR NEVER”  – if you don’t get this Code, your grow fee to costs ratio will continue to fall. CAN YOU AFFORD NOT TO SEE YOUR MP RIGHT NOW?  If you can be bothered advocating for YOUR BUSINESS with your local MP, we have briefing notes available, just contact the office.