TFGA continues to seek peace deal on sheepskins
The Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association (TFGA) revealed it has proposed a settlement to the long-running dispute over sheepskin sales at the JBS Swift Longford abattoir.
It is the practice in most Australian abattoirs that the abattoir owns the meat produced but has to bid for the skins and hides, which can then be on-sold to manufacturers.
The hide processor Cuthbertson Brothers, which buys sheepskins to be made into products such as Ugg boots, says Swift has placed conditions on its access to the Longford abattoir to tender for the skins produced there.
The TFGA Meat Council met recently with Swift directors and offered to broker a peace.
“After meeting both parties and livestock agents we have put forward a number of proposals. They include the suggestion that that the Swift price on skins be a reserve price that is known before the tendering process begins,” Meat Council chairman Brett Hall said today.
“We have also suggested a separate entity be engaged to run the tender process. We have even proposed that the TFGA manages the tender.”
Mr Hall said the Swift directors had given no firm response to the TFGA proposal, pending the outcome of the ACCC action.
“We believe that the sale of sheepskins needs to be as open and transparent as possible. That would give producers confidence that the sale method maximises market competition,” he said.
“We want to see the current difference between Cuthbertson’s and JBS Swift resolved. It’s in everyone’s interest that this happens as soon as possible.
“We remain committed to help both parties in any way we can,” Mr Hall said.