Howard Lies to Primary Producers

Andrew Phillips

3rd September 2006

Despite the continued rhetoric one hears continually from the Government regarding their concern for the long term security of our nation, once again the politicians have shown the lack of value in their word.

Clearly enough time has gone by in the minds of our nation’s “representatives” for them to think we have forgotten all the promises made at the last election.

This week’s revelation that the Howard government has turned it’s back on a supposed iron clad guarantee following the destruction wrought by Cyclone Larry in Queensland that NO foreign bananas would be imported into our nation to meet demand should be roundly condemned by all thinking Australians.

This issue far surpasses the need to meet the short term demands of a petulant urban population whining about the small size and high cost of local bananas. Those same consumers should be buying Australian produce in order to support local producers as well as doing themselves a favour — most foreign produce is irradiated and chemically treated to such an extent one can only wonder about the long-term effects.

In 2001, foreign bananas were imported resulting in an outbreak of Black Sigatoka disease (bananas are also at risk from Moko disease). This outbreak resulted in the closure of 12 farms and cost the Australian taxpayer $27 million to eradicate.

Clearly, the government is using the ignorance displayed by an urban population regarding threats to our primary producers to further open up our markets to foreign produce, produce of an inferior quality, diseased or riddled with chemicals — while our own producers struggle with their backs to the wall.

The track record displayed by our “leaders” ensuring our security and future is not good. Once again, another lie and another threat to a local sector and all the job security that industry provides.

This shipment is not a one-off event. The importers have a 2 year license to continue this assault against local producers.

This is the thin end of the wedge in the continued endeavour to wipe out our local primary producers. Witness the disastrous situation faced by our citrus producers and dairy farmers following government policy. Once these are on their knees, foreign producers will need to fill the gap to meet domestic demand.

One cannot rely upon the government or government-sponsored bodies like Bio Security Australia to ensure the security of local primary producers. What will follow? Citrus canker? Post weaning multi systemic wasting syndrome in our pork industry? Fire blight from NZ? This is the price to pay with a parliament willing to betray local producers and pursue globalist economic rationalist policies.

The value of the words uttered by the “people” Australians continue to vote in every four years.

Articles by Andrew Phillips