Five-point plan to ease soaring food prices

Oct 27, 2022

Five-point plan to ease soaring food prices

Oct 27, 2022

Katter questions lack of relief for soaring food prices in Federal Budget  

THE Federal Treasurer certainly “said the right things” in highlighting the nation’s affordable living issues but failed to deliver effective measures in his budget announcements, Kennedy MP Bob Katter says.   

Mr Katter questioned the lack of relief for escalating food prices, just a week after Treasurer Jim Chalmers said the Victorian floods would likely affect the cost of produce on supermarket shelves.   

And in his speech, Mr Chalmers said Australians knew the cost-of-living was rising, and the nation needed “policies that are affordable, fair and future-focused, delivering a long-term economic dividend.”  

Mr Katter said there was none of that in easing “soaring” food prices.   

“We are bringing to government a five-point plan to provide for Australian Agricultural food security, increase competition, fair farm-gate prices and lower checkout prices,” he said.   

The plan:   

  1. Provides food and manufacturing labelling that:
    1. highlights hidden imports and prevents fraud; and  
    2. indicates the farm gate price and costs included (ie. Production, transportation, ripening) and the supermarket mark up and costs included (ie. Distribution and shelving); and  
  2. provides maximum mark-up on fresh produce – giving both farmers and consumers a fair price; and  
  3. requires divestiture of the large multi-national companies that run Australia’s supermarket giants – both levelling the playing field and providing a more competitive marketplace; and  
  4. creates a National Office of Better Agricultural Regulation  – reducing red tape and the overburden on farmers of marketplace regulations; and  
  5. provides investment in infrastructure and critical supplies/support industries  – reducing production and transportation costs (ie. fertiliser, chemical, fuel, worker access).

    “I am outraged that the average mark-up from the farm gate or the factories to the supermarket for basic goods in 1991 was 106 per cent, now, it is 242 per cent.”  

    “Obviously if there was competition in the retail sector, we wouldn’t be having this problem,” Mr Katter said.  

    He said Coles and Woolworths were now estimated to hold more than 80 per cent of the market, but he did not blame the retail giants for making the most of current legislation, running a business and serving shareholders.  

“I’m not after Woolworths and Coles, I’m after a level-playing field,” Mr Katter said.