Agriculture

Warrnambool Cheese and Butter amends contract terms

Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory Company Holdings Limited (WCB) has altered terms in its milk supply agreements and milk supply handbook following engagement with the ACCC regarding potentially unfair contract terms.

WCB’s contracts with farmers contained terms that allowed it to unilaterally vary the milk price and other milk supply terms, with the farmer unable to terminate the milk supply agreement early without incurring a financial penalty.

Country of origin food labelling surveillance to commence

After 1 July, Australian consumers will have much greater certainty about the origins of the food they buy, due to the introduction of mandatory Country of Origin food labelling. The ACCC will conduct market surveillance checks on 10,000 food products to ensure businesses are correctly displaying the new labels.

All businesses–including manufacturers, processors and importers that offer food for retail sale in Australia–will need to comply with the Country of Origin Food Labelling Information Standard, which specifies how claims can be made about the origin of food products.

2018 compliance & enforcement priorities

In his annual CEDA address, Chairman Rod Sims launched the ACCC's 2018 Compliance and Enforcement policy. This year, the ACCC will focus on consumer issues in broadband services and energy, competition in the financial services and commercial construction sectors, systemic consumer guarantee issues, and conduct that may contravene the new misuse of market power and concerted practices provisions.

Free range chicken egg claims

A new National Information Standard, made under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL), about ‘free range’ eggs will apply from 26 April 2018.

The ACCC has produced this guide to help egg producers of all sizes understand their fair trading rights and obligations when promoting or selling eggs as ‘free range’.