Market imbalance threatens future wine industry growth

Future growth prospects for the Australian wine industry will be heavily dependent on reforms to improve competition for wine grapes, according to the ACCC.

The current low level of competition between winemakers buying grapes not only leads to inefficient outcomes in production and pricing but also discourages innovation and capital investment, ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh said in a speech to the Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference in Adelaide today.

Feedback sought on collective bargaining plan for small businesses

The ACCC is seeking views on its proposal to implement a class exemption that would allow small businesses to collectively negotiate with their suppliers and processors, and franchisees and fuel retailers to collectively negotiate with their franchisor or fuel wholesaler, without first having to seek ACCC approval.

Currently, groups of competitors seeking to negotiate together must first obtain formal approval from the ACCC under its ‘authorisation’ or ‘notification’ processes.

More transparency needed in wine grape sector

Harmful market practices are restricting competition in some Australian wine grape growing regions and limiting the potential for growth of Australia’s wine industry, according to an interim report released today by the ACCC.

Through its detailed market study into the wine grape sector, the ACCC has proposed measures to address concerning practices it believes are common across high-production, warm climate wine grape-growing regions. 

The challenges and opportunities of premium markets in agriculture

Consumer trust should be a major focus for Australia’s agriculture sector as farmers increasingly target premium markets for their produce, ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh told the International Farm Management Association Congress in Tasmania today.

“Most of the growth in the total value of Australian agricultural output in recent decades has come from an increase in the average value of products, rather than an increase in the volume of output,” Mr Keogh said.