Category Archives: labelling laws

What You Can Do as a Concerned Australian!

We urge concerned Australians to talk to those proposing to represent us in the next Government. Ask them:

  1. what priority they give Australia’s long term interest when we have an open door policy to imports which do not meet our standards;
  2.  why do we have a “for sale” sign on our wealth creating assets so foreign countries and companies can buy our land and our businesses;
  3. why our government fund foreign purchases – over $600m to China to lease the Ord Stage Two;
  4. why they allow foreign interests to pay less company tax from the profits they declare (10% withholding tax), after consultancy fees and interest repayment are sent off shore;
  5. why they do not apply the laws we have in place to ensure products do not come here or are removed from sale that do not meet our standards;
  6. why government procurement tends to favour foreign owned business operating here who then do not necessarily source from our businesses and often replace inferior quality;
  7. why products are dumped here and nothing is done;
  8. when will they apply labelling laws which show were products are grown and sourced; where they are made and who really owned the;
  9. why they have not called for an amendment under the WTO to give protection to our key industries and our knowledge base;
  10. why they do not acknowledge the implications of decades of policies based on a false principle that everyone is playing by the same rules. Only Australia does this to our own. All the countries we trade with ignore our intellectual property, do not allow domination of key sectors in the supply chain to dictate prices and profits to their suppliers and import goods to replace their own. Australia cannot take advantage of the Asian century if we do not own our land and our manufacturing.
  11. Sign the AUSBUY petition

We are losing over 200 years knowledge of our land and our capacity for innovation as countries and global companies circle to buy our wealth creating assets. That is why AUSBUY goes to the people. Every $ you spend on Australian owned and made goods and services has a multiplier effect within our economy. $50 a week for every household becomes $50B multiplied in our economy. Sign 

When Are We Going to Support Our Own? Farmers Under Pressure!

In Australian vernacular, other countries are “having a lend of us” while we continue to have an open door policy to imports. The latest story comes from a Kiwi Fruit farmer in Queensland who has been growing his fruit for 35 years, has a major financial investment in his systems and crop, and is now competing in the markets against fresh product from New Zealand, USA, France and Italy. These are coming in the same growing season as our own.

The Australian farmer is receiving less per box than it costs him to grow and the imported products are selling at $65 a box, five times his production costs here. In addition the imported fruit is only 60g, too small to be acceptable from an Australian farmer. These imports are being sent half way around the world and taking shelf space in our stores instead of our own produce. In addition, despite our labelling laws on fresh produce they are not necessarily showing country of origin on the produce at point of sale. Our gatekeepers are not keeping the gate.

How can this continue to happen and what are the consequences on our long term capacity to feed ourselves if we pretend our people are playing to the same rules as other countries, and our legislators and their advisers do nothing about it? We have been complicit in doing this to our own people.

Australian products exported into the EU have high tariffs of around 18%. It appears there are few barriers to Italy and France exporting here. For countries in trouble, dumping is rife. New Zealand managed to negotiate a deal when the EU was set up so that its products do not have the same level of tariffs as Australian produce and products. The USA subsidizes its farmers and has done so for decades, even before we signed a Free Trade Agreement in 2005 allowing easier access to our market than the USA allowed to theirs with tariffs on Australian imports for up to 20 years.

The kiwi fruit were probably dispatched when our dollar was high, meaning they were even cheaper than imports are now. In the last few weeks the A$ has lost over 10% of its value. If we do not have our own growers and processes sourcing and making here, imports will add to the inflationary pressures on the cost of living for basics food commodities. That will add dramatically to our national debt. Some will say it will benefit our exports. But what will be have to export that we still own?

Government policy for decades has been based on the false assumption that we export most of our food. This was the rationale for the ACCC and FIRB to allow the control of every major food commodity except rice to be controlled beyond the farm gate by foreign owned interests. When the research was last done in 1998 it found we only export more than 50% of our beef, grain and fibre, and consume most of our produce here. Foreign control of our exports means Australia does not get the full benefit of our exports as decisions and profits go off shore. Today we import more fresh produce than we export, from countries that do not meet the same standards and growing conditions of our farmers. Australian consumers are being duped and our Australian owned processors under costs pressures with high interest rates, carbon tax, rising energy and water costs etc.

The level of inertia and inaction by our decisions makers is costing our farmers and businesses dearly. When complaints are put to the ACCC or Productivity Commission, local companies and growers have to “prove” there is a problem and months and years go by as the market rapidly changes. New Zealand sought and gained an Amendment under the WTO to “protect” in 1995 its key industries. Australia has done nothing. Why not?

For many of our farmers and businesses talk has been too little too late as they lose shelf space and distribution in the supply chain. When an economy is out of balance it is our wealth creators, our farmers and our businesses that have no safety net. They are told to be productive and competitive with their hands tied behind their backs.

That is why informed consumers can make a difference. What price so we put on our future?

Interviews can be arranged with Lynne Wilkinson, CEO of AUSBUY on 0294375455 or 0418314923.

The Wisdom of Fairy Tales

This is the House that Jack Built. This is a story of unintended consequences. The cat ate the rat the rat ate the malt that was used to make the bricks of the house. In this story it is the farmer whose actions save the house, so Jack gets married and lives happily ever after”.

Even nursery rhymes identify farmers as wise. What relevance does this have to Australia? We are living the unintended consequences because control has been taken away. We get so caught up in complicated thinking, listening to others’ answers about what is right for us. The answers should be obvious – acting on them less so.

The issue is what is the “intent” of those who answer our questions?

“A fraudulent intent, however carefully concealed at the outset, will generally, in the end, betray itself”. Titus Livius 

Why You Should Donate to Australia’s Food Security NOW!

Any aware Australian will know that our farmers are under great pressure with declining on farm incomes and rising debt. Any wonder some of them are selling their farms to pay off their debt. Any wonder foreign countries are grabbing our land.

Research has not been done since 1998 showing the decline in income for our farmers. Governments do not want to know the consequences of their policies. AUSBUY together with other industry groups is asking for donations to our Food Security Research so that policy makers can see the facts they do not want to know.

Australia cannot benefit from demand for our products if we do not own the land and the distribution channels.

We are in this situation was based on a false assumption that we exported most of our food, when we only export more than 50% of our beef, wheat and fibre. Now we import more fresh food than we export in direct competition to our own and many of our exports are foreign owned.  In addition our arable land is under great pressure from non farm industries and urban expansion.

The plight of our dairy farmers highlights that even if you are among the most productive, innovative and efficient in the world, market forces based on price do not help especially as competitors and the supply chain dictate the farm gate price. They are expected to compete with countries that long ago recognised their need for food security and have policies which support their own, and with a retail market that says price is the reason people buy. At what cost to our future and the product quality and integrity of our Australian owned and grown brands.

In Australia on farm income gets around 4% subsidy in the countries buying our assets it is closer to 41% that is more than ten times more than our farmers. This is an issue our policy makers should be accountable for in the coming elections. Please donate today and give our farmers some hope. Their hope is out hope.

Farmer Power Meeting 13 February 2013 – AUSBUY is giving the farmers our support

As you know we like to keep you up to date with our activities related to food security. The invitation below comes about after years of our support for our farmers and manufacturers. It is rare that farmers raise their concerns, but they are now and they need political will and consumer support to help them. Help us help them. In the meantime check out our web site and articles about Food Security.

………………………………….

The Chairman of the northern group of Farmer Power would like to inform you of a crisis meeting to be held on Wednesday, 13 February commencing at 10.30 a.m. in Tongala Victoria.

The meeting is planned to follow on from the highly successful meeting held in Western Victoria attended by around 600 members of the local community consisting of farmers and local business owners with grave concerns for the future of the Australian dairy industry and the businesses and rural communities that depend on it for their survival.

Our key objectives to date are to achieve a resolution to the key factors raised and any further issues that are relevant to our industry, for example:

  • A better and fairer farm gate price for our milk.
  • Australian Dairy Products back on our supermarket shelves and all dairy products to meet Australian standards.
  • Industry support from our Governments.
  • An independent review of the structures representing our industry.

A key focus to the meeting is the impact on the community at large if Australian dairying and agriculture is allowed to decline any further and to communicate the importance of protecting the Australian industries and food supplies into the future for all Australians. They also plan to try and offer advice and support to those who attend who are suffering severe anxiety at a personal level due to the stresses placed on them due to poor returns.

In a few short weeks since Farmer Power’s creation by grass roots farmers, the name is now registered and has a webpage (www.farmerpower.com.au)  that is regularly used to communicate the ideals and progress of the group with interest coming from all states of Australia in the group.

To date they have had extensive interest from the media in the development of this group with at this point the print media of the Weekly Times, Stock and Land and the Shepparton News farming supplement Country News which is distributed throughout the Goulburn Valley involved, and the television network WIN are doing an introductory story this Monday, 4 February 2013 and to cover the meeting.  ABC  7.30 Report will be here for two days with background interviews with farmers the day before our meeting followed by coverage of the meeting as well. ABC Radio will also cover this event and we would expect other local radio stations to follow this as well.

Senator Barnaby Joyce, Lynne Wilkinson from Ausbuy and Dick Smith have accepted the invitation to address the meeting as well as.

AUSBUY would value your attendance to further their cause for the good not only of the  farmers but for all Australians.

If you are going to attend then please let is know by email.

Climate Change? Opportunity to Advance and Support our own

Instead of using the media to vilify the climate change protagonists, it would be useful to step outside the circle and acknowledge that we have come this far as an advanced civilisation because of man’s ingenuity. Therefore it makes sense if we can place less demand on non renewable resources using renewable energy technologies then we will all win. The financial and policy resources used to protect old technologies, which in themselves were right at the time, means that we delaying the opportunity to advance ourselves and others through innovations.

It is not an all or nothing game. Rather we ask how do we advance for the benefit of all?. And as many of the technologies for renewable resources were initially identified here, we should be developing them here, and retaining our intellectual property here. For Australia this will be particularly important as the majority of our non renewable energy is foreign owned, and we have not negotiated to control the price. Our people will pay a high price for resources from our land with few clean alternatives.

Visit ausbuy.com.au for more information and to be informed.

 

Advance Australia Fair – This Land We Love

It is time to consider the words of our National Anthem Advance Australia Fair.

What does fair mean?What is giving others a “fair go”? What about “getting a fair go” and “having a go”?

Unfortunately after 225 years some of our people think they are “not getting a fair go” any more, even though they were born or came here to “have a go”. We might welcome people to our shores, but let’s not forget to let them know how we came to be as we are. With opportunity there is responsibility to contribute.

It was not easy when we first settled here in 1788. In fact we were left to fend for ourselves, a forgotten outpost until nearly twenty years later when our Colonial masters started to appreciate what this land might have to offer. In the next 100 years we developed good relations with indigenous Australians, and whether we acknowledge it or not, the very essence of being Australian is the love of this land. That is part of their legacy to us which we will never forget.

Since 1788 we have come to create “wealth for toil”. We have fought wars to defend our land. We have established one of the oldest and most stable democracies in the world. We have acquired more Nobel prizes in medicine and science than any other country our size. We have welcomed people from many corners of the earth, who in turn have called Australia home and embraced what is means to be an Aussie. All these things coalesced to make us a “productive, innovative and clever country” as we engaged our “builders and makers” in the process.

But all is NOT well. We are not getting a “fair go” for our toil and we are selling off our assets rather than allowing Australians to invest in our own. Our nature’s gifts rich and rare are now sold off with the “for sale” on our assets as we allow other countries and companies to control many of our wealth creating assets. These are the birth right for all Australians, now and for future generations. In fact we sell our land to countries who do not reciprocate the opportunity. What would our ancestors say of this?

Let’s make it Australia Day every day: when we spend our hard earned money, when we work, when we play, when we interact in our communities. If we do not look after nation’s assets, our own land and build and grow our own businesses, then  it will not be there to look after us. We owe this out of respect to those who came before us and with regard for those who follow.

Let us all Advance Australia Fair.

We invite you to write a poem about Australia and enter our Australia Day competition. Entries close on Australia Day, January 26th 2013.

Enter Now!

http://www.ausbuy.com.au/159.html

An Inconvenient Truth – Whose Truth?

Comment below in response to “An Inconvenient Truth” published in The Australian on 18 Jan 2013 http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/an-inconvenient-truth/story-e6frg6z6-1226556153378

Not sure who is inconvenienced by the truth about GM foods. The four global companies who control GM foods are the ones generating the positive GM science results mostly out of Africa. They also benefit most from the sale of GM seeds to farmers who cannot grow non GM food on their land once GM is used. Or when they take our non GM farmers to court for contaminating GM foods in silos as is a case before the High Court of Australia at present. Farmers in the USA regret using GM because it did not deliver the higher yields promised. The fact that our once independent CSIRO now relies on corporate funding means that even our scientists are compromised. The opportunity to “feed the world” would be more benefit to Australia if the sector was better managed by giving some control back to our farmers who have the knowledge and skills. Instead we have given majority control of all food commodities except rice (for now) beyond the farm gate to foreign interests, making our farmers price takers not price makers. Add to that, Government purchase of water licenses during the drought and selling them as transferable tradable commodities off shore puts less assets in our farmers hands. In the meantime we are selling our land to countries that have failed to manage their own land sustainably. GM will only add insult to injury for what was once our competitive advantage, our clean green growing environment.

www.ausbuy.com.au

Petition against the Sale of Our Land

Time To Have Your Say

We have a “For Sale” Sign on our wealth creating assets.

Does this meet the national interest test?

Are you concerned about the sale of our land to foreign countries and companies, especially those countries which do not reciprocate the opportunity?

The countries buying our land have long recognised the importance of food security, yet successive decades of our policy decisions have forced our farmers off their land. This is an issue of national importance. We ask you to have your say.

We urge you to send links for this petition and the survey to other concerned Australians. AUSBUY represents the voice of Australian owned companies and growers across our communities – they deserve our support.

AUSBUY is preparing to present the petition along with Kelvin Thomson, Bob Katter and other politicians to parliament next Wednesday, 28th November 2012. We need your help to get as many signatures as possible, so please share this with all your friends and family and ask them all to sign the petition against the sale of our land to foreign interests.

CLICK HERE to sign the AUSBUY petition or visit www.ausbuy.com.au/petition.html