Agricultural businesses urged to have say on country of origin labelling

Agriculturel-BusinessesConsumers and businesses are being urged to have their say on the Government’s proposed country of origin labelling reforms before the consultation period closes on 29 January 2016.​

The Consultation Regulation Impact Statement, which was released late last year, outlined the issues to consider when implementing the new reform agenda for country of origin food labelling in Australia.

The Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Christopher Pyne, said he wanted consumers and businesses alike to have the chance to provide feedback and opinion to ensure the reforms are based on the best information available.

“Since the consultation opened in December we have heard from food manufacturers, retailers, agricultural producers and consumers—but we welcome more feedback,” Mr Pyne said.

“We have come a long way in addressing an issue that previous governments from both sides of politics have failed to resolve.

“But we have to make sure the feedback we gather is as comprehensive as it can be so that the reforms can meet the needs of as many people as possible.”

Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Barnaby Joyce, said he expected the reforms to hit the mark and create a clear and unambiguous country of origin labelling system.

“Through collaboration between governments, food businesses, retailers, farmers and consumers we have put together a set of positive reforms for the Australian food labelling system,” Minister Joyce said.

“We are looking to finally address an issue which has existed in the Australian food industry for a long time. That’s why it is important that everyone who is interested and has views on this is able to consider the proposals and to make a contribution.”

The consultation period also includes an opportunity to comment on a draft information standard that sets out the rules around food products and the proposed new labelling requirements.

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