Thursday, October 16, 2014

Irrational arguments against ACCC action over 'free range'

Writing in Stock and Land, and various other publicatioins, SamTrethewey has tried to justify the consumer deception practised by many egg farmers who label eggs as 'free range' even though they are from intensive production systems. He argues that those producers have simply followed the Model Code. But all that shows is that he hasn't read the Model Code, because, if he had, he would see that the maximum outdoor stocking for free range egg laying hens is 1500 per hectare. There is a reference in the Appendix to 'any higher density' being allowed for meat birds as long as a rotational system is in place.
In his rant, Mr Tretherwey claims that  'the Australian Competition andConsumer Commission (ACCC)"starts throwing their weight around and penalising some farmers to satisfy some consumer complaints.

But against which standard? These farmers have been following the agreed voluntary code.

Admittedly, industry hasn’t been able to unite to form mandatory standards for production.

So the ACCC penalises against perception, but whose perception?

A recent case saw the ACCC smacking free-range egg farmers in the face because not all hens were outside.

That’s right'.

Yes indeed, that's right Mr Trethewey, the ACCC was right to take action as  demonstrated by the farm's decision to accept an agreed penalty of $300,000. The Federal Court judgement is a great result for the industry.

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