Senate McKenzie’s venting not helpful to industry: Cattle Council

James Nason, 29/08/2017


Cattle Council of Australia is calling out Senator Bridget McKenzie’s public venting against Peak Industry Council’s handling of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) recommendations as a complete misrepresentation of the facts.

“Senator McKenzie’s comments regarding the lack of leadership in the beef industry are surprising and appear to be an attempt by the Senator to salvage some semblance of credibility out of the ongoing Senate inquiry” said Howard Smith.

“I fail to see where the ‘consolidation of the red meat processing sector’ has been addressed by this Committee. Senator McKenzie’s comments are at best political grandstanding”

“Despite the Senator’s accusations, Cattle Council has been actively engaging with red meat organisations in getting competition policy right and not stifling industry with another layer of red tape. It is worth noting that from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) national 12-month study of the beef supply chain, there has not been a single case prosecuted against anyone.”

“RMAC has been instrumental in developing these policies and has shown true leadership in pulling together competing industry interests – as it was designed to do. Calling out RMAC for a failure to abide by ACCC recommendations only shows a lack of understanding of industry structures”

“The Australian beef industry has a strong reputation on the global stage and comments like these from Senator McKenzie are of no use to our industry and are potentially harmful for our producers”

Cattle Council is committed to working with all aspects of industry to put in place policy that enhances competition and gives producers confidence in the markets for their beef.

Source: Cattle Council of Australia 



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  1. David Byard, 30/08/2017

    Sen. McKenzie says beef leaders continue to stick their heads in the sand, in their replies both RMAC and CCA chairs had succeeded, with remarkable clarity in supporting the Sen. arguments.
    CCA talks about how well they are doing looking after producers interests, with MLA keeping CCA on life support, one can only wonder,.RMAC talk about how well they are doing specially in regards to the ACCC enquiry. This is the same RMAC that employed the ACCC chairman;s company, the Australian farm Institute to report on the funding models for a new representation organisation for grass fed cattle producers.RMAC continually refuse to release this report to producers, who funded this report.. The Senate enquiry into the structures governing levies recommended that RMAC be disbanded. To me the facts are very clear and the Sen is correct beef leaders must pull their heads out of the sand.

  2. Loretta Carroll, 29/08/2017

    The Red Meat Senate Inquiry was not only about the consolidation of the processing sector. The Terms of Reference for the Inquiry were:
    a) the potential for misuse of market power through buyer collusion and the resultant impact on producer returns;
    b) the impact of the red-meat processor consolidation on market competition, creation of regional monopolies and returns to farm gate;
    c) the existing selling structures and processes at saleyards, particularly pre- and post- sale weighing, as well as direct sales and online auctions, and whether they remain relevant; and
    e) any other matter.
    Further to the Senate Inquiry maybe the President of Cattle Council should re-visit the ACCC Cattle and Beef Market Study who also share industry concerns. In its Summary it says, “Analysis for this market study has revealed a number of issues which risk damaging transparency, competition and efficiency in the cattle and beef industry. Specifically, there are shortcomings in the transparency of price reporting and carcase grading, and concerns about conduct affecting the competitiveness of saleyard auctions.” Leadership is about listening to the stakeholders which include our Australian beef farmers and rather than denying a problem exists work collectively to solve them so regional Australia can grow.

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