Dairy

Senate inquiry delayed again

by
July 12, 2017

UDV president Adam Jenkins said the industry had been waiting patiently for the report to be released.

Farmers hoping to hear the outcome from the Senate inquiry into the dairy industry will have until August, with the committee again granted an extension.

The latest extension is the fourth granted to the Senate Standing Committee on Economics which was initially scheduled to hand down the report on February 24.

Announced in September last year off the back of the milk price crisis, the inquiry explored the legality of retrospective elements of milk contracts, the behaviour of processor Murray Goulburn and other related matters.

Submissions closed in November with six public hearings held across the country.

The report has repeatedly been delayed with extensions granted in February, March, May and June with the report now expected to be completed on August 10.

UDV president Adam Jenkins said the industry had been waiting patiently for the report to be released.

‘‘(The delays have) certainly been a source of frustration. That’s when people start to lose confidence in it,’’ he said.

‘‘We’re hoping there’ll be more emphasis at looking at the retail sector and laying down recommendations for that as well.

‘‘A dollar a litre for milk and $6 cheese is unfavourable to everyone ... retailers who continually do this need to take a look at their behaviour and need to question their motivation.’’

A spokesperson for committee chair Senator Chris Ketter said the report was in the final stages of production and was expected to be tabled when parliament resumed.

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