04 April 2018

New Hort Code, now in full effect!

The transition period for the new Horticulture Code ended on Sunday. This means the new Code is fully in force and will cover most transactions between growers and traders.
 
Some material is available on the ACCC website which will assist with the transition; below are some of the links that be useful: 

  • A fact sheet for growers: How the Horticulture Code helps you
  • Answers to questions which have been posed by growers and other stakeholders are in the Horticulture Code FAQs.
  • Having a Horticulture Produce Agreement is an integral part of compliance with the Code. To make it as straightforward as possible we have produced sample HPAs, depending on whether growers sell their produce to an agent or a merchant (as defined in the Code):
  • Sample Horticulture Produce Agreement - Merchant
  • Sample Horticulture Produce Agreement – Agent
  • Questions relating to packing houses are some of the most frequently raised with the ACCC: We recently sent out a newsletter on this topic. If you would like to receive future newsletters, with the latest news and events relevant to the horticulture sector, please sign up to our Agriculture Information Network.
  • While the Code defines horticulture produce as unprocessed fruit, vegetables (including mushrooms and other edible fungi), nuts, herbs and other edible plants, it does not define ‘unprocessed’. The ACCC’s web page provides some clarification, and an example, about how this is defined.
  • One of the parts of the Code which is new (i.e. was not in the previous Code) is the obligation to deal in good faith. Our website provides an explanation, and examples, of good faith.
  • Traders have to give growers a regular statement about how they dealt with the grower’s produce. The ACCC website has information outlining what these statements need to tell growers.
  • The full range of ACCC information is at: Horticulture code guidance materials

 
Note an online tool is available if you would like to anonymously report an competition or fair trading issue in the agriculture sector.
 
For more information please contact:
Andrew Parnell
Senior Analyst Agriculture Unit
Australian Competition & Consumer Commission
Level 17 | 2 Lonsdale Street Melbourne 3000 http://www.accc.gov.au
T: 03 9290 6975 | F: 03 9663 3699

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