Would you pay an extra 10c for your milk?
FEDERAL Member for Page Kevin Hogan has welcomed a decision to look at introducing a temporary milk levy to assist the nation's dairy farmers.
Agricultural Minister David Littleproud today said that if retailers supported a 10 cent levy on each litre of milk, then the government would look at it.
Would you pay an extra 10c for your milk to support farmers?
This poll ended on 06 September 2018.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
Mr Hogan said the levy would be welcomed by local dairy farmers.
"This is a good temporary measure that will assist many of our local dairy farmers," he said.
"Some of our dairy farmers are being paid less than the cost of production. This is unsustainable.
"The levy is no silver bullet, but it will give local dairy farmers financial relief as they come together as an industry to develop a united position in a response to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission report and on a mandatory Code of Conduct.
"It is important that the industry tells the Government what we can do to help them, rather than politicians and bureaucrats in Canberra telling farmers how to farm.
"I am also pleased that the Minister is discussing the issue with big supermarkets, including Woolworths."
Member for Lismore, Thomas George and Nationals candidate for Lismore, Austin Curtin have also declared their support for a milk levy.
Kyogle farmer Shane Hickey launched a petition in conjunction with Queensland Dairyfarmers' Organisation calling on the major supermarkets to increase the price on all milk by 10 cents per litre and for processors to guarantee that the full amount will go directly back to the farmers.
Mr George said he fully supported the efforts of this petition.
However he also it could go further in challenging the major supermarkets to support farmers regardless of whether there is a drought.
"While the Northern Rivers has faired the drought better than other areas in NSW, the low farm gate price of milk and higher feed costs has had a major impact on the productivity of our farmers," he said.
"An increase of 10 cents per litre would hardly be noticed by consumers.
"However, it would be a godsend to dairy farmers, not only in NSW, but right across the eastern coast of Australia.
"The challenge was put to me by Mr Hickey via social media and I have spoken to him personally, giving him my full support for the campaign."
Nationals Candidate for Lismore Austin Curtin said the dairy industry has a strong history on the North Coast and politicians should do what they can to fight to keep the industry viable.
"Through my work supporting Tenterfield Shire Council's Drought Appeal I have seen firsthand how scarce and expensive high-quality hay is at the moment," he said.
"The regular operating and feed costs for dairy farmers are high during a good season, let alone when they are competing with other primary producers during the drought.
"It's about time the major supermarket chains gave our farmers a fair go, not only now, but also into the future."
Details of the petition can be found at: https://www.change.org/p/petition-coles-woolworths-for-a-10-cent-litre-drought-levy-on-all-milk