2013 Autumn - Will supermarkets save or enslave agriculture

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FPJ1001F - Schaper M - The Australian farm sector and the competition and consumer Act

Schaper M (2013), The Australian farm sector and the competition and consumer Act, Farm Policy Journal, Vol. 10, No. 1, pp. 33-45, Autumn, Surry Hills, Australia. 

For almost 40 years Australia has had a national competition law designed to ensure that markets operate effectively and fairly. First known as the Trade Practices Act 1974, and more recently renamed the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, this body of law has had a major impact on farming enterprises and commercial practices. This paper provides an overview of the major elements of the Act, and the role and responsibilities of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the national agency responsible for enforcement of the Act. It discusses recent competition developments in a number of areas of direct relevance to the Australian agricultural sector, including the use of collective bargaining, the operation of the Horticulture Code of Conduct, country of origin and food labelling, reforms to the wheat export regime, and allegations of  misuse of market power and unconscionable conduct in relation to supermarkets and their dealings with suppliers. 

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