Dairy farmers’ livelihood in Parliament’s hands | Fair Milk Price Logo Bill vote imminent

Struggling Dairy farmers across Queensland are urging the government and the LNP to pass KAP’s Fair Milk Price Logo Bill when it comes to a vote in Parliament this week.

“We have an opportunity to create real change here,” KAP’s Shane Knuth said. “The dairy industry is dying in Queensland, and we have a chance to do something about it and help the farmers.”

KAP’s Sustainable Queensland Dairy Production (Fair Milk Price Logos) Bill 2016 would create a voluntary scheme. If a milk processor chose to participate in the scheme, they would be allowed to put a logo on any milk bottles if they had paid the dairy farmer a fair and sustainable price for that milk. The logo would also tell consumers where the milk was produced. The bill also creates a mechanism for determining what a fair and sustainable price is.

“Most people know that a huge problem in the dairy industry is that farmers aren’t paid a sustainable price for their milk. When people go to the shop to buy milk, they want to do the right thing by farmers but the problem is they have no way of knowing which milk the farmers were paid a fair price for. This bill would fix that,” Shane said.

KAP’s Robbie Katter said it was time for the government and LNP to put their money where their mouth is. “The government and LNP have been very vocal about all the problems the dairy industry is facing. They stood out the front of Parliament House at the dairy rally, waving their hands in solidarity with the dairy farmers, but they haven’t lifted a finger since. Here is their chance. Right here, right now, they can make a difference,” Robbie said.

Over the last 15 years, in Queensland, we have lost on average 70 dairy farmers a year.

In the year 2000, Queensland had 1500 dairy farmers, there are no just 430.

Fourth generation Biggenden dairy farmer and KAP candidate for Callide, Robbie Radel, said dairy farmers expected an explanation if the government and LNP refused to pass the bill.

“We are on our knees out here,” Robbie Radel said. “If the government and LNP don’t pass the bill, I expect them to come out here and look us dairy farmers in the eye and tell us why they wouldn’t do it. Why they wouldn’t introduce a voluntary scheme that would help save this industry.”

“It’s a chance for the LNP, in particular, to show some support for primary industry in Queensland, something they haven’t done much of in this term of Parliament,” Robbie Radel said.

The bill is due to be voted on tomorrow (Wednesday) afternoon.


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