Beef with ACCC on figures

Taylar AmoniniNorth West Telegraph
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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has been criticised for “erroneous and misleading” figures in a report on the beef and cattle industry.

Australian Beef Association executive officer David Byard has called for the Federal Government and the ACCC to collect up-to-date information on the true breakdown of retail beef percentage costs.

In April, the ACCC announced at a Senate hearing for the inquiry into the effect of processor consolidation in the red meat industry, that it would undertake a desktop study of the beef and cattle industry.

In October, the ACCC published its interim report.

According to the report, Coles claimed the producer received 54 per cent of the retail price, the processor 13 per cent and with retail costs at 30 per cent, this left a 3 per cent margin for supermarkets.

“We acknowledge the ACCC interim report highlights the many problems within the industry, but to my utter disbelief the report contained information supplied by Coles back in 2007,” Mr Byard said.

“The detail came from a report conducted by the ACCC after then-minister for Agriculture Peter McGauran expressed concern with the record prices on supermarket shelves and record lows in saleyards.”

Mr Byard said 2007 figures showed farmers received closer to 28 per cent of the retail price, and Meat and Livestock Australia reported in 2015 that for the previous 10 years producers had received an average of 32 per cent of the retail value.

“This is nowhere near the 54 per cent claimed during the 2007 study, which producers disbelieved when the claim was presented,” he said.

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