One-dollar milk kills another family dairy: What are you doing to help?

Are you prepared to pay more for products to ensure Australian businesses are able to stay operating?

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It’s a problem facing many industries, including dairy farmers.

A southern Queensland farmer has come forward to say he’s getting out of the industry due to lack of support for dairy farmers. Beaudesert Times reported Wally Holcombe from Veresdale said current demands were unrealistic.

“The industry in the 1980s and 1990s was really good to me and they were certainly the best years we’d had here,” Wally Holcombe told Beaudesert Times, after confirming he’s now closed his farm gates.

“Milk was in demand and we had a lot of supporting industries that were doing well. Since deregulation, costs kept going up and (milk) prices kept going down.”

His family had been in the dairy industry for 64 years, but he found it hard to supply as much milk as Victorian farmers due to the more humid climate.

It was the price milk was being sold for that Holcombe had the biggest issue with.

“If the price went up by 10 cents for our average supply, we’d be back in business,” he said. “We’d be able to employ people and maintain our farm and equipment.”

We’ve already seen many businesses go by the wayside. If it’s not out of business they are moving off-shore to get cheaper labour. Holden, Vegemite, Arnott’s, Aeroplane jelly and even Bonds, King Gee and Hard Yakka are on the list of offshore manufacturing now.

If you had the chance over again would you purchase more of these products to ensure they stayed Australian made?

Sometimes it is hard to tell which is actually authentic Aussie but the good news is, from July next year, labels on food products made in Australia will have to clearly show the percentage of locally grown or produced ingredients they contain.

And the rules around what constitutes a local ingredient will be tougher, preventing companies from slightly changing the form or look of imported goods then slapping on a ‘made in Australia’ label.

Under the new rules, there’s a hierarchy of labelling, ranging from ‘packed in Australia’ to ‘grown in Australia’.

‘Grown in Australia’ means that 100 percent of the ingredients were grown locally, while ‘product of Australia’ means that all of the ingredients were Australian and all major processing was done locally too.