Australia's pig farmers disappointed at Inquiry
Australia's pig farmers hope of import Safeguards and
extra support for the industry's dire situation have been ignored by the final
report to the Federal Government from the Productivity Commission (PC),
according to Australian Pork Limited (APL) in a press release today.
APL CEO Andrew Spencer said it is reality that the industry is bursting due
to cheap imports of frozen pigmeat. Added to this situation is high grain prices
that are making local production completely unviable.
"This distorted attitude of the PC on short term industry support comes at
great cost to the livelihoods of farmers, rural and regional communities and
ultimately consumers. To continue to ignore the fact that all of Australia's
pork imports come from countries that actively subsidise their pig farmers and
their pork industry with tax payers funds, laughs in the face of fair trading
conditions and a free trade environment," commented Spencer.
Spencer went on to say that 70% of the hams, bacon and smallgoods market is
sourced from overseas. In the current environment this percentage share is only
going to climb, he believes.
"The PC, by taking this stance, is in effect encouraging foreign subsidies on
imports, whilst on the other hand telling Australian pork farmers they don't
deserve Government support." he said.
"Other livestock industries such as beef, lamb and chicken do not suffer
direct competition from imports and therefore do not have their domestic trading
environment left open to these pricing distortions."
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