Milk processors need to know Dairy Code

Friday, 29 May, 2020

Milk processors need to know Dairy Code

The ACCC is encouraging dairy farmers and milk processors to make sure they understand their rights and obligations under the Dairy Industry Code of Conduct as the publishing deadline approaches for milk supply agreements.

The mandatory code, which came into effect on 1 January 2020, requires most dairy processors to publish on their websites by 1 June standard form milk supply agreements to cover all the circumstances in which they intend to purchase milk in the coming financial year.

The code defines those who buy milk directly from farmers (including cooperatives, retailers and brokers) as processors, although some sections of the code will not apply where a processor is a small business entity.

The code spells out a number of requirements for milk supply agreements, including a minimum price for milk, a 14-day cooling-off period and a complaints handling process. It also requires processors and dairy farmers to act in good faith in their dealings with each other.

“We are reminding processors of their obligations to comply with the code, including by publishing relevant contracts on their website before the June 1 deadline,” ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh said.

“The ACCC is responsible for enforcement of the code, and we will be checking for compliance. If farmers believe a processor hasn’t complied with their publishing obligations, they can contact the ACCC.”

Farmers or processors can contact the ACCC on 1300 302 021 to report alleged non-compliance.

Image credit: © Africa

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