Last month, Australians realised the extent of the drought crisis faced by Queensland and New South Wales farmers. While there is no doubt that all agricultural industries are hurting, the dairy industry faces a tougher challenge than most.
To produce milk, dairy cows need to be in peak health and their food quality and quantity maintained. Whereas beef cattle can be fed lower quantity and quality feed to see them through the drought.
So, the increasing scarcity and the price of freighting in fodder has hit the New South Wales and Queensland dairy industries hardest. While public support via donations to organisations such as Buy a Bale have helped many who are at their lowest, these organisations have also had a detremental effect, since those able to afford to buy it, cannot find any feed to buy for love nor money.
Also public support via donations is short lived and unsustainable.
So QDO has decided to do something about it by appealing to every day Aussies to help put pressure on the supermarkets.
The national campaign launched by QDO this weeks asks consumers to sign an online petition for supermarkets, Coles and Woolworths in particular, to increase the price on all milk by 10 cents/litre and for processors to guarantee that the full 10 cents will go back to the famers.
We ask that this increase apply not only to branded milk but also to the current $1/litre products sold.
QDO reached out to Kyogle Dairy farmer Shane Hickey whose post on being paid $2.46 per hour went viral with over 4 million views and countless shares to help drive awareness for the campaign. While Shane is not a Queenslander, he shares our sense of injustice and our drive to turn around the dairy industry and make things happen.
For too long, we’ve hoped for the processors and supermarkets to do the right thing. Nothing has changed. So we are calling on our fellow Australians to drive change by signing and sharing the petition.
We’ve seen an outpouring of support on social media sites like Facebook where everyday Australians are rallying behind our farmers so we know we have their support, it is just finding the right way to harness it.
When we see millions of Australians supporting a 10 cent/litre Drought Levy and asking the supermarkets and processors to implement it, we will see the full power of the everyday Australian’s power and influence.
The petition can be found on change.org by searching 10 cent Drought Levy or via this link: https://www.change.org/p/petition-coles-woolworths-for-a-10-cent-per-litre-drought-levy-on-all-milk-brands
QDO President: Brian Tessmann