ACCC says compliance audits will be coming
THE Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is putting growers and traders in the horticulture industry on notice that they need to take steps to comply with the 2017 Horticulture Code of Conduct, or face penalties and fines.
Addressing the 2017 NSW Farmers Horticulture Forum, ACCC commissioner Mick Keogh called on growers and traders to familiarise themselves with the code and ensure their businesses were compliant. Since the revised Horticulture Code was introduced on April 1, the ACCC has worked with industry associations to educate growers and traders about their rights and obligations. The next stage of the ACCC’s work in relation to the code will be to begin compliance audits.
“Later this year the ACCC plans to use its investigative powers to check the industry’s level of compliance with the Horticulture Code. If code breaches are detected, the ACCC may take enforcement action,” Mr Keogh said.
“The code is designed to offer new protections for growers and traders. We want the horticultural industry to understand that breaching the code could mean facing an infringement notice or court action.” There will be penalties up to $63,000 for serious breaches.
WARNING: ACCC boss said audits would be rolled out to ensure the horticulture code is being followed.