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David Littleproud

Labor plays catch up on supermarket price gouging

Leader of The Nationals David Littleproud said Labor is playing catch up on supermarket price gouging, after Treasurer Jim Chalmers agreed to a mandatory Food and Grocery Code of Conduct, more than 18 months after The Nationals began calling for it.

Mr Littleproud said although the move is welcome, The Nationals have been calling for a mandatory Code of Conduct since the start of 2023.

“It has taken Labor an extra 18 months to take action against supermarket price gouging and adopt all 11 recommendations of a review into the Code, undertaken by Dr Craig Emerson,” Mr Littleproud said.

Despite Prime Minister Anthony Albanese declaring his government would do ‘whatever necessary’ to lower food prices this year, the Labor Government was offered support to bring forward its Grocery Code of Conduct Review 12 months earlier but rejected the idea, all because Labor could not see the urgency in taking action.

“I wrote to Assistant Minister for Competition Andrew Leigh in December 2022, encouraging and offering The National’s support to bring forward the Grocery Code of Conduct Review by one year.

The Assistant Minister instead opted for the scheduled review in October 2023, which was then further delayed 100 days by the Labor Government.

“Labor simply missed the opportunity to make sure there was fair, transparent pricing from the farmgate to the Australian plates when help was needed.

“If Labor had taken our advice back then, we could have already seen fairness for farmers and fairness for families. Instead, Australians continue to the feel the pain at the checkout.

The unnecessary delays have been frustrating and have hurt Australian families and farmers. The review could have been done and dusted, with decisions already implemented, to help families and farmers and to try and stop them from being ripped off before Christmas last year.”


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