No change to the dairy levy
Our farmers will not be polled
THE dairy levy will not be changed, after the Dairy Levy Poll Advisory Committee unanimously decided not to request a levy poll.
This decision was made after a number of meetings, which cited a submission from Australian Dairy Farmers and Dairy Australia which went into the issues, challenges and status of the dairy industry landscape.
The levy sits at 2.868c/kg milk fat and 6.991c/kg protein.
Dairy Australia is supported by the levy and is the national services body of the dairy industry.
Committee chairman John Lawrenson said the committee had been mindful of the current state of the dairy industry and the impact prices had on farm profitability.
“In considering the level of the levy, the committee was cognisant of the need to ensure that an appropriate level of funding is available to Dairy Australia to support the current and future long-term research, development and extension strategy for the dairy industry which is critical to improving farm productivity,” Mr Lawrenson said.
The DLPA Committee formed as a result of a 2015 vote held by dairy levy holders which removed the compulsory requirement for a poll to be held every five years.
Instead, the committee convenes every five years to determine whether a change to the levy should be proposed.
Of the 15 committee members, 11 are dairy levy payers.
Aweek ago, advocacy group Farmer Power launched a petition campaign calling for a vote to cut the dairy levy to zero.
Farmer Power vice-president Alex Robertson said Dairy Australia had effectively taken choice on industry actions out of the hands of the farmers.
“(Dairy Australia) has continued to levy over $30m per year from cash-strapped farmers in a situation where many farmers are operating at a loss,” Mr Robertson said.
“DA should have volunteered a reduced levy to help farmers out but instead it put a meagre $1m into a seemingly insulting Tactics for Tight Times campaign.”
Levy payers who disagree with the decision and are Group A members of Dairy Australia can lodge a petition with Dairy Australia within 75 days of the committee’s notification.
The petition should include a proposal on what the recommended levy should be.
NO LEVY POLL: Dairy farmers will not get to vote on changes to the levy this year.