Independent Member for Indi, Cathy McGowan AO, will fully support a Senate inquiry to investigate the behaviour of the meat processing industry.
Ms McGowan congratulated the National Party on its public support, led by Senator for Victoria, Bridget McKenzie, for a Senate inquiry into the current red meat processing and supply chain system. This long-standing issue came to a head recently when a buyer boycott occurred at the newly opened Northern Victoria Livestock Exchange at Barnawartha. Local beef producers are refusing to accept post-weighing at cattle sales, a practice buyers want to see introduced.
Ms McGowan’s office was immediately inundated with calls for action. In an email to key producers in the area following a meeting at Barnawartha, Ms McGowan advised local farmers to consider forming a committee and terms of reference for a potential Senate inquiry. She would also support a delegation to Parliament to meet with Government to discuss cattle producer concerns.
“Many constituents and farmers within Indi have raised this issue with me,” Ms McGowan said.
“I welcome a Senate inquiry. It will provide an opportunity for affected farmers and other stakeholders to have their say and hopefully provide recommendations for a fairer and more competitive market system.”
Ms McGowan is urging all cattle producers to speak up about how the behaviour of meat processors and buyers is impacting their livelihood.
“I encourage farmers and stakeholders in Indi to provide submissions to the inquiry,” she said.