The Australian Made Campaign has welcomed the Government’s decision to consult with stakeholders and undertake consumer research into its proposal to introduce a mandatory ‘Australian content’ symbol for all locally produced food products.
“This is a very important initiative of the Government and it is imperative therefore that it gets it right,” Australian Made Campaign Chief Executive, Ian Harrison said.
“The Australian Made Campaign applauds the Ministers for Agriculture and Industry making country-of-origin branding a priority and looks forward to working closely with the Government on the introduction of the new system.”
It is believed the Ministers will be submitting further recommendations to Cabinet in August on changes to the current labelling laws, and what the proposed new symbol will look like.
“Australian Made has submitted comment to and appeared before a number of Government Committees on country-of-origin labelling in recent years and it is great to finally see traction in this important area of Government policy,” Mr Harrison said.
The not-for-profit Australian Made Campaign administers and promotes the Australian Made, Australian Grown logo, Australia’s registered country-of-origin certification trade mark for all classes of Australian goods.
The rules for using the logo on food products are more stringent than the rules for making country-of-origin claims under Australian Consumer Law. The Australian Made Campaign has been lobbying for that gap to be closed, and an education program to be rolled out to help increase understanding of country-of-origin claims and the value proposition of buying Australian made and Australian grown products.
“A tighter system for food labelling, coupled with a better understanding of that system by consumers, will give Aussie shoppers more confidence in what they are purchasing,” Mr Harrison said.
“A widespread education campaign will be an essential component of the revised system.”
“There is also an obvious role for the Australian Made, Australian Grown logo. It has been helping Australian farmers and manufacturers sell genuine Aussie products to consumers all around the world for nearly three decades. It makes good sense to build on that,” Mr Harrison said.