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TAS Country : February 3rd 2011
4 Tasmanian Country Friday, February 4, 2011 News Teenager Lauren takes reins of From Page 3 ''I remember when I was fiveweusedtogoasabig family group,'' Lauren said. ''When I was little I used to think it was awe- some.'' Nominated by former long-time show president and Charolais breeder Neville Fenton, Lauren said she didn't expect her name to be put forward. ''I chair the meetings and talk to dignitaries and represent Bushy Park at show council meetings,'' she said. Showground facilities have been upgraded with new toilets and sheds. ''We are doing the whole thing up to encourage peo- ple to come up, we want to cater for a broader range,'' Lauren said. Tasmanian country and western band the Wolfe Brothers are performing in the afternoon and a jams and preserve competition will be judged by food chemist Michael Potter, who owns a fruit farm at Plenty. There will be live- Organic status New rural and regional uni grants Do you live in a rural or regional area and are going to uni? You could be eligible for a grant under the Rural Tertiary Hardship Fund. For more information check the website www.deewr.gov.au/rthf or call 1800 020 108. AG38947 Farmers fear collateral damage from milk war WAR: Coles and Woolies have slashed milk prices. THE Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association has come out fighting for the state's dairy far- mers who they say will become ''collateral damage'' in the super- market price war on milk. Coles and Woolworths slashed no-frills milk prices by more than a third to $1 a litre last week. ''Dairy farmers have become collateral damage in the pursuit of unsustainable market share in the wider grocery sector,'' TFGA chief executive Jan Davis said this week. ''That is morally corrupt.'' Ms Davis called on the major supermarkets to return retail milk prices to an acceptable level. She said that it was ''inevitable'' that the supermarkets would re- duce the price farmers were paid for their milk to the point where many would be forced out of business. ''This is the real price that we are all going to have to pay if the chains persist with this war of attrition,'' Ms Davis said. ''It's not aimed at helping its customers, but is intended to increase each other's market share.'' Ms Davis said supermarkets were prepared to sell milk at a loss just to get people into their stores who would then spend more money on other goods. Coles, the first of the supermar- kets to reduce the price, has denied the cut will be passed onto far- mers. But Ms Davis said milk for a dollar per litre was unsustainable. ''They might as well give it away for free,'' she said. ''It defies logic to think that the supermarkets will absorb these losses. ''It will be passed on to consumers in price rises on other goods while dairy far- mers will be paid less for their milk.'' The TFGA said the chains must show in- tegrity to their customers and loyalty to dairy farmers by end- ing the price war. The TFGA has called on consumers to support their local dairies and milk producers. Coles spokesman Jim Cooper said the supermarket had not imposed the cost of cuts on the dairy industry and did not intend to do so. ''People can judge us about our actions down the track,'' Mr Coo- per said. Dairy industry leader Winston Watts said Coles and Woolworths risked sending a large part of the dairy industry out of business by flaunting their supermarket domi- nance. When he was the head of the New South Wales Dairy Farmers Association, Mr Winston fought hard against farmgate pricing de- regulation without some form of balancing power against the super- market chains. Mr Winston said the market was now corrupt. ''You cannot expect farmers, whether they be dairy farmers, grain growers, fruit and vegetable growers or even wine growers to be able to survive the gross ma- nipulation of a market without seeking some form of intervention to protect them. ''I challenge the Government and the ACCC and other regu- lators to come out and openly state that a fair market exists and that some redress is not justified. ''They have let the supermarket chains get far too big and it is time to curtail their behaviour and their growth through enactment of tough anti-monopoly laws such as those that apply in other Western countries.'' Mr Winston said dairy farmers and other vulnerable primary pro- ducers should be legally able to form selling groups or cartels to try and offset the imbalance. Newly released Grid pricing for wool, similar to selling livestock "over the hooks" gives woolgrowers the option to choose their price and reduce selling costs. Prices are generated from all stages of the supply chain as the various Michell businesses in Australia, and around the world, receive direct orders from customers at various levels of the wool processing industry. This removes the market risk and speeds up the selling process. If the auction market is the better option at the time, Michell Direct ool provides a cost effective and transparent selling service via the main selling centres, but with reduced fees and charges. o see for yourself, go to michelldirectwool.com.au, click on "Put us to the test" and compare our fees and charges for selling at auction with your current brokers charges. e're sure you'll be happy with the result. he choice is yours, rid or Auction, but we'll keep you informed of the latest trends so you have the right information to make the correct selling decision. For more information on our full range of marketing options go to michelldirectwool.com.au or phone 1300 4 0 and start dealing direct with ustralia's only fully integrated wool company. MD /
January 27th 2011
February 10th 2011